Okay, you're ready to use a baby bottle or your breast pump for the first time, and you’re wondering if you should sterilize the parts before using them.
The simple answer is 'YES!" for many reasons.
First, it’s important to sterilize baby products that will touch the food you serve your baby or go into your baby’s mouth because it’s the only way to kill 99.9% of germs. This is especially important during the first few months of your baby’s life and when your baby is still developing his/her immune system. And it’s also essential for premature babies and those with immune deficiencies.
Here are some general guidelines about how often you should sterilize bottles and other accessories like pump parts and pacifiers:
- ALWAYS before the first use
- At least every few weeks, and weekly if your baby is in daycare
- After your baby has been sick
- And if you’re pumping, you should sterilize your pump parts every day
There are multiple ways to sterilize baby products. The only ways to ensure that 99.9% of germs are killed is by boiling, in a microwave or using a sterilizing appliance. There are pros and cons to each approach:
- Boiling: It’s the least expensive approach but also least convenient because you have to boil water, and make sure the products stay under the boiling water since they tend to float. You also need to be careful that you don’t get burned when you remove the products from the boiling water
- Microwave: This is a very convenient way of sterilizing using steam. There are two common approaches: using a microwave steam bag or a microwave steam sterilizer. Some Moms however are concerned about sterilizing plastic bottles in the microwave because of chemical leaching caused by the high heat.
- Sterilizing appliance: This is another very convenient way of sterilizing using steam. Just place items in the appliance, turn on, and the appliance sterilizes in minutes. There are two common types: Sterilizers and Sterilizer-Dryers. Many Moms prefer Sterilizer-Dryers like the Baby Brezza One Step Sterilizer-Dryer because it automatically sterilizes and dries bottles, pump parts and other accessories – saving you time and ensuring your baby products are fully dry and ready to use when you need them. Plus items are kept sterilized for up to 24 hours inside once the sterilizing and drying cycle is complete.
Good luck feeding your baby and keeping them safe & healthy by sterilizing frequently.