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Are sterilisers essential?

(22 Posts)
Penguin34 Fri 25-May-18 20:36:43

Do you really need to sterilise your baby bottles etc?
How long for?
It's just in some counties they feel that the dishwasher is enough.
What do you think?

TheresALight Fri 25-May-18 20:42:07

I put my bottles in the dishwasher sonetimes and they often come out with 'dishwasher sand' on them and always seem to collect water. So I still rinse them under the cold tap put them in the steriliser afterwards to make sure.
I use a large tupperware container and cold water tablets. It costs about £2 a month for the tablets, so why risk it!

dementedpixie Fri 25-May-18 20:45:17

The dishwasher takes much longer and can stain them orange if you wash them with the wrong things

Mybabystolemysanity Fri 25-May-18 21:28:50

I think dishwashers are generally a bit disgusting. Another vote for the Milton system here. Why take the chance? It's so easy, we're still sterilising DD's bottles and cups at 17 months. This is entirely because we put them in the dishwasher!

NurseP Fri 25-May-18 21:31:58

You need to sterilise and use boiling water for milk powder due to the bacteria in the powder. A plastic tub and a tablet works well if you don't want an electrical or microwave steriliser. I have heard of babies being very unwell due to not using boiling water for making up feeds. Not worth the risk in my opinion.

GlitteryFluff Fri 25-May-18 21:33:33

We sterilised bottles until ds stopped having formula - so about a year old.

As far as I know it's the stuff in the formula that can grow bacteria and be harmful.

Dummies, cups, whatever else we stopped at 6months ish as at that point they're picking up god knows what off the floor and licking god knows who! Obviously it all got washed in hot soapy water and rinsed though.

Ds is never ill (almost 4) so I think germs did him some good.

Will be doing the same with dd when the tune comes - she's only 4 months at the mo.

ProseccoPoppy Fri 25-May-18 21:42:24

It depends if you’ll be using formula. If you’re using the bottles for expressed breast milk then for a healthy full term baby I’d just wash them up (with DC1 I was also a expressing for a milk bank which used the milk for v sick preemies so I sterilised everything all the time to be safe - that was overkill for my DC really but meant I could donate any spare bottles without worry). If it’s formula, probably best to play it safe - I think I’d worry about not sterilising if I were FF.

TheMasterNotMargarita Fri 25-May-18 21:47:02

Guidelines say to sterilize eating/drinking utensils til age 1.
We had self sterilising bottles that go in the microwave as mostly bf.
Sterilised bottles til drinking cows.milk but stopped worrying about the rest once he was crawling and eating crap from the floor/dog food/soil envy <vom

Bluebirdsky Fri 25-May-18 22:37:02

NHS guidelines are to sterilise everything until they are 12 months old and that dishwashing doesn't count as sterilising

Jupiter15 Sat 26-May-18 08:13:27

If you are using formula you need to sterilise because it can have bad bacteria in it. Otherwise not needed.

Oysterbabe Sat 26-May-18 08:21:07

I haven't sterilised a thing for DS who is 5 months but he's only had breast milk so far.

Onedaylikethi5 Sat 26-May-18 08:23:39

Sterilising is really important for anything you are using for milk be that formula or expressed breast milk.

I truly believe that the focus on breastfeeding means poor understanding about how to safely feed by other means. NCT offer good independent advice on preparing bottle feeds on their page.

PotteringAlong Sat 26-May-18 08:25:36

I didn’t sterilise anything for mine, but they didn’t have bottles.

BabyBed Sat 26-May-18 08:54:21

I was chatting to a friend about this the other day. She sterilised everything for her first DC and just did a really good wash for the second. Apparently in the US they don't routinely sterilise (so she said, I don't know). Both DC survived.

I'd guess it's a belt and braces thing really. If the bottle is sterile and formula has been made with boiling water, or EBM is bottled, then there is no source of bacteria. If the bottle isn't sterile then there is a chance, albeit a small one, that there are illness causing bacteria that will then feed and grow once you add the milk. If you were feeding immediately the risk would be smaller than if you were preparing bottles in advance then storing for use later, as any bacteria would have longer to multiply.

I have noticed that a lot of UK guidance seems to assume the worst and so is very prescriptive in what MUST be done, which is fine, so long as the procedures don't become so onerous that people give up entirely. At times you may have to compromise, but it's not always clear what the safest compromise is and that is frustrating.

Steeley113 Sat 26-May-18 09:53:46

I bottle feed and don’t have an actual steriliser this time. Got mam self sterilising bottles and mam dummies which come in a little tub you can put them in and sterilise in the microwave. Much better then having a great big steriliser on the side.

Tinkerbell89 Sat 26-May-18 09:59:43

We are sterilising until they're atleast 1. You can buy sterilising tablets but having a steriliser is so quick and easy.

Thursdaydreaming Sat 26-May-18 14:49:50

I use the dish washer or hot soapy water to clean the bottles. I dont think it's necessary to sterilise. For one, the bottles arent "sterile" in the usual sense afterwards anyway, since you reassemble the bottles by hand and pour in a non sterile liquid.

Also the recommendations are different in each country.

But sterilising just takes a minute so you should do what you feel comfortable with.

Interestingly where I live (Australia) there is no recommendation to make up formula with hot water. In fact you are specifically advised not to do this, as the hot water would kill the beneficial live cultures in the milk. So make of that what you will.

Patienceofatoddler Sat 26-May-18 15:16:39

If NHS and the formula brand you choose to use recommends sterilising then yes I would have thought that's the way to do it.

I know the NHS recommends to 12 months.

I sterilised my sons bottles up until a year (He was combi fed) - It felt the right thing to do and wasn't a hassle as I was washing them anyway so popping them in an electric steriliser on worktop took a few seconds.

I used glass baby bottles (my daughter uses them for an evening drink now so they lasted 3 years) and they are so much better than plastic - they don't scratch when you clean them with a bottle brush so less likely to harbour any germs.

I think the key to remember with formula / sterilising is the reason guidelines and formula feeding process has changed so much over the years is due to research and finding less babies are ill this way.

Just because you know someone who done it x y z way and they were fine doesn't make it right and doesn't prove anything - Your best sticking to the national guidelines where at all possible.

milney25 Sat 26-May-18 15:56:27

I've been looking at electric sterilisers and I am sooo confused. They say you can do six bottles at a time, but the bottles are only sterile until you open up the machine. So what's the point in doing that many at once? Because five of them won't be used straight away and will have to be redone?! I'm sure I've missed something crucial, any pointers helpful!

redexpat Sat 26-May-18 15:58:07

We just put everything in a big pan of water and boiled it for 5 minutes.

dementedpixie Sat 26-May-18 16:00:57

once the steriliser is finished assemble the bottles and they are ok for 24 hours

Smurfybubbles Sat 26-May-18 16:38:31

Another vote for cold water and sterilizing tablets, only takes 15 minutes!

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