Many mothers already know that it is always good to keep extra milk in the freezer in case you need it while you are breastfeeding. However, what many mothers may not know is that there is a right way to thaw this milk so that you don't run the risk of harming your child's health. So learn here how to do it correctly and ensure your child's proper nutrition.
Method 1 of 4: Freezing Milk
Step 1. Store milk in small portions
Breast milk is only good for about 24 hours after thawing, so don't freeze more than a day's lactation in a single container. Instead, distribute the milk in bags suitable for use in the freezer or in freezer bottles with a capacity of 60 to 120 ml of milk in each container.
- If you choose the bottle, use a BPA-free glass or plastic bottle with a tight-fitting cap for an airtight closure.
- If using sachets, use the ones for freezing breast milk.
Step 2. Record the date on the containers
Even when frozen, breast milk doesn't last forever, so don't use that frozen for more than three to six months. To avoid the risk of forgetting, write down the date of the day you froze the milk in each container before putting it in the freezer.
Step 3. Leave the oldest milk in front of the others
Organize the containers by placing the newest milk behind the oldest ones in the freezer, where the temperature is more consistent, and also to facilitate when defrosting the right milk.
Step 4. Take milk out of the freezer before bed each day
Include this in your nightly routine so you don't run the risk of running out of milk the next day and not having to defrost milk in a hurry!
Method 2 of 4: Thawing Milk Overnight
Step 1. Take the oldest milk out of the freezer
Check the date noted on the package to see if it is still within the expiry date and always use milk stored longer.
Step 2. Leave the milk in the fridge overnight
Sometimes it can take up to 12 hours for the milk to completely thaw in the fridge, so make sure you have time! If your child tends to breastfeed at 7:00, for example, take the milk out of the freezer and put it in the refrigerator no later than 7:00 pm the night before.
Step 3. Breastfeed your child in the morning
Before that, make sure the milk is completely thawed and don't hesitate to throw it away if you don't use it within 24 hours of thawing.
Method 3 of 4: Thawing Milk on the Same Day
Step 1. Leave the milk in warm water
Place the container under a tap in warm running water or place it in a basin of lukewarm water and change this water every few minutes (every time it cools) until the milk reaches room temperature.
Step 2. Use a bottle warmer
Instead of using warm water, place a bottle of frozen breast milk in a bottle warmer, which gently thaws the milk. Buy such a product on the internet and see how much it makes your life easier!
Step 3. Give the milk to your child or store it in the fridge
If you are going to save it for later, use it within 24 hours and do not refreeze thawed milk, as it can incubate harmful microbes that are dangerous to the baby's health.
Method 4 of 4: Using Thawed Milk
Step 1. Gently shake the container
As the milk may separate and form a layer of fat on top, shake it gently to mix the liquid and solid parts again.
Step 2. Heat the milk in warm water (if you like)
If your child prefers it warm, place the closed container in a bowl of warm water until the baby's favorite temperature is reached. Never heat the milk in the microwave, on the stove or in boiling water, as excessive heat destroys the milk's nutrients, in addition to burning your child's mouth!
Step 3. Test the temperature of the milk
Before you breastfeed your baby, test the temperature of your milk by dropping a few drops of it onto your wrist, knowing it should be warm, not hot.
It's no use simply picking up the bottle to test the temperature of the milk; you need to test it on the skin of your wrist or forearm
Step 4. Taste or smell the milk
If it smells or looks sour, throw it away. Always do this, especially when the milk has been at room temperature for more than an hour or in the fridge all day.
- Once thawed, breast milk does not need to be warmed. Although some mothers have the habit of heating it, this is not necessary if your child accepts the milk at room temperature.
- If you produce a lot of milk, contact your city's health department to see if they accept breast milk donations for mothers who are unable to breastfeed.
- Never refreeze thawed milk.
- Do not heat the milk in the microwave or on the stove, as excessive heat causes loss of nutrients in the milk, in addition to heating unevenly and ending up burning your child's mouth.
- Do not leave unfrozen milk in the refrigerator for more than a day or at room temperature for more than a few hours.
- Never mix fresh and frozen breast milk.