Anyone who has ever expressed breast milk respects the amount of work you go through to pump those precious ounces. And you don't want even one drop to go to waste or make your baby sick. Brushing up on your breast milk storage guidelines to be clear on how long breast milk can sit out.
Breast milk storage can be confusing. Follow these practical tips on choosing containers, freezing breast milk, thawing breast milk and more. If you're breast-feeding and going back to work or looking for more flexibility, you're probably considering using a breast pump.
Women who pump or hand-express milk for their babies know that breast milk is like liquid gold. A lot of time and effort goes into getting that milk for your little one. No one wants to see a drop go to waste.
These guidelines cover the full range of breast milk storage and feeding, including evidence-based directives for how to refrigerate breast milk and what to do when reusing breast milk. Some of the most important rules to remember from the CDC include:. Never re-freeze breast milk that has already been thawed.
How much expressed milk will my baby need? Previously frozen milk may be kept in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours after it has finished thawing. Do not refreeze.
Note: Historically, researchers have speculated that breast milk can be stored longer than four hours. According to some researchers, the bactericidal activity of refrigerated fresh milk remains unchanged for the first 48 hours 5 6. However the American based Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine and US Food and Drug Administration state sterilising is not necessary for milk storage containers and pump parts:.
By following recommended storage and preparation techniques, nursing mothers and caretakers of breastfed infants and children can maintain the safety and quality of expressed breast milk for the health of the baby. These are general guidelines for storing human milk at different temperatures. Various factors milk volume, room temperature when milk is expressed, temperature fluctuations in the refrigerator and freezer, and cleanliness of the environment can affect how long human milk can be stored safely. Do you have other questions about storing breast milk, such as where to store breast milk at work, and what to do when the power goes out?
When you breastfeed, your milk is always warm and ready for your baby. You can store pumped milk in the refrigerator, the freezer, an insulated bagand—for a limited amount of time—at room temperature. From temperature to timing, cooling and warming, this information can help you get started.
So how do you store and use your milk safely? But good hygiene is vital to ensure that stored milk is safe for your baby — read on to find out how to store breast milk properly. Breast milk is better for your baby than formula — but freshly expressed breast milk is preferable to refrigerated, and refrigerated is better than frozen.