Before you make up a baby’s feed, the bottles need to have been washed in hot soapy water and then sterilized.
You will find directions on the tin for how to make up the formula, including how many scoops of powder you will need for the weight/age of your baby. Remember that powdered infant formula is not sterile so to avoid any risk of infection you must only prepare each feed as it is needed.
It’s really important to make sure that good hygiene practices are followed when preparing the feeds. Here are the basic steps and information:
- Clean the surface where you will be preparing the feeds and wash your hands.
- Boil fresh tap water in a kettle or pan. Water that has been repeatedly in a kettle should not be used because it will have too much sodium. Mineral water should not be used either because it is subject to less health regulation than ordinary tap water and may contain higher concentrations of minerals that are safe for your baby.
- Leave the boiled water to cool, but not for more than half an hour. Official guidelines state that the water should not be less than 70 degrees when you add formula.
- Pour the required amount of water into the sterilized bottles and add the precise amount of formula following the directions on the tin. The usual guideline is one level scoop of formula per 28ml of water. It’s very important to add the powder to the water and not the other way round so that you ensure you get right quantity. If you add too much or too little powder, your baby could become ill. Always use a sterilized knife to level off each scoop.
- Fit the teat and cap back on the bottle and shake it to mix up the contents.
- It should be lukewarm – just above body temperature. Test it out by shaking a few drops onto the inside of your wrist. If necessary, cool it down by holding it in a jug of cold water or under a running tap.
- Once your baby has drunk from a bottle, throw any milk that has not been used within two hours.