Until your baby is 6 months old and crawling, you’ll need to sterilise all bottle- and breast-feeding equipment, such as express pump, bottles, teats, discs and lids, each time, to kill milk bacteria that could result in tummy upsets.
Here’s how to do it
Before sterilising remove all traces of milk from feeding equipment with hot soapy water, using a bottlebrush and squirting water through the teat. You can then sterilise in one of three ways:
Put sterilising chemicals (liquid or tablet) in cold water inside a steriliser tank, and when dissolved, add the equipment for the specified time (usually 30 mins). Make sure the items are totally submerged and there are no air bubbles. Once sterilised rinse the items in cooled boiled water. Cold-water sterilising takes time, but it’s a tried and trusted method that’s very cost-effective.
Put all parts of the bottle or breast pump in a pan of boiling water, put the lid on and boil for 10 minutes (teats usually need four minutes). This is cheap as no extra equipment is needed, but is does damage teats, and will probably steam up your kitchen!
Electric or microwave steam sterilisers are more expensive, but easy to operate, quick and efficient. Just add water, load the items, and switch on, or put in the microwave. Any sterilised equipment not used within 24 hours will need to be sterilised again.