A common struggle for moms who are nursing is learning how to properly store your breast milk. Safe consumption of your breast milk is important, but it's also handy for nursing moms to get assistance with feeding their little ones during those tiring days and nights. We put together some basic tips for storing breast milk to help you provide the best milk for your baby.
Preparation for Storing Breast Milk
Before you pump and store your breast milk, there are some preparation tips you should be aware of.
- First and foremost, always wash your hands, as well as the storage containers. Babies have very weak immune systems, so you want the cleanest possible materials.
- Also, label the date you prepared the breast milk on the container you are putting it in, as well as your kiddo’s name if you are sending them to a daycare.
Storing Your Breast Milk
- When you are storing breast milk, it is best to do so in smaller batches to prevent waste. Around 2-4 ounces is recommended.
- After you have pumped, the milk should be chilled in a refrigerator or freezer.
- Your milk can remain at room temperature for up to 4 hours, however it is best to chill it as soon as you can.
- It is not recommended to put breast milk in the door of your fridge, as it faces the risk of losing quality from the door opening and closing. Store in the back of the fridge. Refrigerated breast milk should be used within 4 days but can be used up to 8 days after it has been stored.
- If you are not planning on using breast milk within 24 hours, it is best to freeze it.
- Frozen milk is able to be used for up to 9 months after storing it! If you do choose to freeze it, do not fill your container all the way, as the milk expands as it freezes.
- Again, store milk towards the back of your freezer, and not in the door.
Knowing how to properly store your breast milk is beneficial for the health of your baby, but also encourages you to think about your health too, such as drinking more water every day and eating regular healthy snacks. We hope these simple tips help you maximize your pumping hours and help you store your breast milk properly during in your nursing journey.