8 Things to Tell the Babysitter About Feeding your Breastfed Baby
Whether you need a full-time nanny or your mother-in-law has offered to watch the baby for date night, make sure your caregiver knows the eight basic principles for watching breastfed babies.
- Your baby does not need water. The babysitter shouldn’t give water to a breastfed baby, even on hot days. This also applies to juice or any liquid other than breastmilk.
- Do not add cornmeal or rice cereal to the baby’s bottle. It’s unnecessary and creates a choking hazard and contrary to myths, will not necessarily make baby sleep for longer stretches at a time.
- Lansinoh Breastmilk Storage Bags are designed to thaw quickly. Lay the bag flat in a glass bowl with warm water, then transfer the milk into a bottle.
- Don’t shake breastmilk! When you pour the breastmilk from bag to bottle, the watery layer will separate from the creamy layer. Gently swirl the bottle to mix the two.
- Don’t microwave breastmilk! Not only can microwaves create unsafe hot spots, they also kill important nutrients. Use a bottle warmer according to the instructions or place the bottle of breastmilk in a bowl of hot water and let it warm up to a safe temperature.
- Test the heat of the breastmilk by squirting a little on your inner wrist. The milk should be warm or room temperature, not hot.
- Once thawed, breastmilk can’t be refrozen, so use the breastmilk in smaller increments and add to it if baby is still hungry.
- Don’t overfill the bottle with too much breastmilk if you are unsure how much baby will drink.Once a bottle has been used, it needs to be finished within the hour as bacteria can grow. Start with smaller increments of breastmilk and add more if baby is still hungry.