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Babies For Parents Toddlers

Safe & Natural Ways to Clean Baby’s Milk Bottles

Baby’s milk bottles need to be cleaned thoroughly after each milk feed to prevent the growth of nasty bacteria that may lead to severe tummy upsets. They in turn can lead to serious consequences for infants who have yet to build up their immune system.

While regular dishwashing detergent gets the job done, improper washing could lead to your baby ingesting traces of detergent. There are bottle cleansers specifically formulated with natural ingredients for washing baby bottles too.

Are there any other ways to clean the bottles in a natural way that’s safe and effective? The answer is yes! Instead of the regular bottle cleanser, you can opt for any of these methods listed below!

Do note that after cleaning the items, they should be sterilised by boiling, steam or UV for babies below 12 months of age.

What are the safe ways to clean your baby’s milk bottles?

  1. Baking Soda

Baking soda is affordable, inexpensive and can be used for many purposes. It is an effective natural cleaning agent which can be used to cleanse your baby bottles. To do so, boil a big pot of water and add two tablespoons of baking soda. After mixing the solution thoroughly, place the bottles in and let them soak for the night. Scrub and rinse the bottles the next morning to ensure that the baking soda is completely removed. Then, lay the bottles out to dry and sterilise.

  1. Eco Enzymes
    Eco enzymes are not only incredibly versatile, they cost close to nothing to make and uses readily available ingredients. Making eco enzymes require a bit of time as the enzymes need to ferment. However, the result is an all-purpose solution that can be used for the skin, as fertiliser, to clear drain chokage and a whole lot more!

Another advantage is that it helps to reduce the amount of fruit scraps in your home that would otherwise be incinerated.

Here is the recipe to create eco enzymes:

INGREDIENTS

  1. Fruit waste, including peels, seeds and flesh. Do not use hard parts such as durian husks and mango seeds.
  2. Sugar (white or brown)
  3. Water (can be recycled water from washing rice, fruits or vegetables)
  4. An airtight plastic container. Store the container in a cool and dry place away from direct sunlight.

METHOD

  1. Make 16 equal folds on a piece of paper. Unfold the paper and put it against the container. Use a marker to mark 16 lines on the container that correspond to the folds. Then add one part sugar, three parts fruit peel or juiced fruit residue and 10 parts water.
  2. Give the mixture a good shake and tighten the lid.
  3. In the first month, stir every day or every other day to release fermented carbon gas. In the second month, stir once a week and, in the third month, once in two weeks. If your container has a small opening, try to release the gas daily in the first month or tie a plastic bag at the opening with rubber band to allow gas to enter it.
  4. The mixture should be ready in three months. Use a sieve or pillow case to filter the residue.

To use as a bottle cleaner, mix one part eco enzymes with one part natural base soap.

  1. Natural Soaps

Natural soaps are environmentally friendly and do not contain harsh chemicals. Most natural soaps are in bar form. Simply scrape bits of the soap bar into the bottles and mix with water to clean. The ingredient list should be easily understandable with natural ingredients instead of strange sounding chemicals that are tongue-twisters to pronounce. A safe bet is to use castile soaps. Castile soap is made from vegetable oil and can be used to clean bottles safely.

 

Bottle teats are susceptible to developing mold if not properly cleaned. How do you clean bottle teats?

Which of the above natural methods have you tried? Let us know in the comments!

Categories
Babies For Parents Toddlers

Bottle-feeding Guide: How to choose the right teat for baby

Are you wondering how to pick the right milk bottle teat for your baby?

If your baby is drinking breastmilk or formula milk powder from the bottle, teats also known as bottle nipples are one of the bottle feeding essential items parents need to prepare for.

Most parents face a dilemma when it comes to choosing baby milk  bottles and teats. Which type of bottle teat is closest to a natural nipple? More importantly, what type of teat will your baby accept?

You may find that your baby refuses to drink from bottles and you could end up having to run through many brands before settling on one that your baby prefers.

Material and Lifespan of Bottle Teats
In the market, bottle teats are mostly made from latex or silicone. Both materials have their benefits, and you can switch between them.

Latex is a natural material that is softer and more flexible than silicone, which can make it easier for babies to adapt to. It is more resistant to bites. If your baby has a hard time adapting to latex teats, boil it in milk for 3 minutes to get rid of the taste.

Latex is a natural material and it breaks down more quickly compared to silicone, which is a synthetic material. There is a small possibility that your baby may be allergic to latex and thus, unsuitable to use latex teats. When latex teats break down, the teats may feel sticky.

Choosing the right milk bottle teat for your baby: silicon vs. latex

Silicone is a manmade material that is more durable compared to latex. It is clear, firm and tends to be more resistant to temperature, exposure to sunlight and fatty foods. It is heat resistant, meaning that it can undergo many rounds of sterilisation without developing cracks that could breed bacteria.

During wash of milk bottle teats, always ensure that they are thoroughly washed without any breastmilk or formula milk powder residue left behind. Regardless of the material chosen, teats should be replaced every one to two months, or immediately when you notice bite marks, cracks or damage.

Latex teats are said to feel more like a real nipple.

Shapes of Bottle Teats
Bottle teats come in all shapes and sizes. Some are slim, some are bell shaped and some have a flat end on one side. Baby bottle manufacturers are constantly working to produce a bottle teat that most resembles the feel of a natural nipple.

There are teats with an anti-colic feature, where a vent in the teat allows air to escape when the baby suckles from it. Certain bottle teats have a vacuum and require the baby to suckle harder in order for the milk to be released.

Your baby may take a while to accept a bottle teat, so you may have to get different types of teats for your baby to try.

Flow rate of Bottle Teats

As your baby grows, they will be able to consume more milk and thus, a teat with a corresponding flow rate should be used. A flow rate is how fast the milk goes into your baby’s mouth. The flow rate depends on the number and type of holes in the tip.

Although baby bottle manufacturers categorise their teats by age, it should be noted that the flow rate suitable for your baby may not correspond to his or her age. If you notice that your baby is sputtering and choking, switch to a teat with slower flow.

Conversely, if your baby is frustrated and sucking hard, change to a teat with faster flow.

Teats for newborns have a slow flow and have one hole in the teat. The more holes in the teat, the faster the flow rate. Fast flow teats may have as many as four holes, depending on the brand of teats.

Mothers who direct latch and bottle feed at the same time prefer to continue using slow flow teats as it means that the baby has to suckle harder in order to get milk. Nipple confusion is a common concern for mums who breastfeed and bottle-feed their child.

There are vary flow teats in the market where the flow increases depending on how hard your baby suckles.

Each baby has their own preference, and you should be prepared for some trial and error across the different teat brands before your baby finally settles on one.

Which type of teat does your baby prefer? Let us know in the comments!