Babies are probably the most vulnerable to the attacks from germs and pathogens- anything from a mild attack of a fungus to a serious gastrointestinal problem is common in babies. Food related illnesses are typically the most popular in babies, and if not handled well, they may lead to severe deterioration of health.
You may be cleaning your baby’s feeding bottle properly using soap and water, but that’s not enough- sterilization is a crucial step that most moms tend to forget. Before sterilization techniques were practised, thousands of babies died due to attack by viruses and bacteria. It is therefore important to ensure that your baby’s feeding bottle is sterilized properly to protect him against a wide range of possible illnesses.
Before sterilization, normal cleaning of the bottles is important. Clean the feeding bottle properly with soap and water as you usually do, and ensure that all traces of milk are removed. Wash the bottle with water many times to be sure that any detergent or milk that may have stuck to the edges of the bottle or in holes and corners are completely removed.
After the bottle has been cleaned thoroughly, move on to sterilizing it- in the recent years, microwave and electrical sterilization techniques have gained popularity- but if you don’t really have a microwave, here are some ways to get the bottle sterilized.
This method is based on hospital sterilization techniques, and is simple and easy to follow. It takes around roughly 10 minutes to get done with, plus cooling time, which makes it a quick and efficient method of sterilization. Make sure that for this method, you use bottles that are safe to boil. Also be sure to place the parts upside down to ensure that they are fully sterilized.
Microwavable bottles are the newest products that are aimed at making things easier for moms. These bottles can be sterilized in the microwave without any extra efforts- and best of all, it takes just 90 seconds to sterilize a bottle. It is important to know that you must not keep the bottle closed while it is in the microwave- it can cause pressure to build up on the inside of the bottle.
Boiling is probably the oldest and most traditional way of sterilizing. All bottle feeding equipments should be kept in boiling water for atleast 10 minutes for it to be sterilized properly. Also, you must make sure that the pan you use for boiling should be suitable for the purpose for which it is being used. This method is comparatively time consuming, and hence, it is not preferred by modern moms.
Cold Water Sterilizing
Cold water sterilization is yet another effective means of sterilizing baby bottles effectively. This method makes use of a non toxic solution which is also available in a handy tablet form. This solution is thought to remove all bacteria, and at the same time, is safe enough to be applied to the skin or even swallowed for that matter.
You can make use of special equipments for sterilization, or simply use a clean bucket of water along with something heavy to submerge the bottles properly into the liquid solution. While doing this, make sure there are no air bubbles left inside to ensure complete sterilization. After half an hour of immersion, the bottle will be completely sterilized, and can be used safely for up-to 24 hours. Make sure you change the solution daily, and wash your hands before you pick up the sterilized bottles and use them.
Experts believe that it is important to carry out the process of sterilization of these feeding equipments at-least till your baby attains one year of age. Also remember to avoid leaving sterilized bottles and other equipments in the open for long before using them- this will make them lose their sterility quickly.
Also ensure that your baby doesn’t put items lying down on the floor in his mouth- this may not always be possible, but try and keep a watch on him especially during his early months of life, and create a protective and bacteria free environment around him as far as possible.