The World Health Organization research has shown that bottles should be made up individually before each feed. Have an area in the kitchen where you can store and prepare bottles and a separate shelf/cupboard for all baby’s equipment, making sure it is sterilized and everyone knows in the household this is an area just for the baby. Having a set time in the morning to wash and sterilize your feeding equipment is a good habit to get into from the beginning. It’s a bit daunting at first but it will be like making a cup of tea after a week!

Wash hands with warm soapy water and wipe down cleaning surfaces.

Empty your kettle and rinse, fill with fresh cold water from the tap (some parents buy a separate, non-expensive kettle just for use for sterilizing baby equipment). Never use bottled water. Boil the tap water and let it cool for 30 minutes.

Wash bottles, teats and all baby equipment with warm water and washing up liquid using the baby bottle brush only (bottle brush is only for bottles)

Rinse all equipment thoroughly and stack into the sterilizer, leave cooling time, by the time this is done the kettle will have cooled down by 20 minutes.

Once the lid comes off the sterilizer your bottles must be prepared immediately, otherwise they are germ-free for 3 hours with lid on securely. (Newer sterilizers have a 12-hour system, this means you can sterilize the bottles at night and prepare them first thing in the morning.) Generally, bottles can be used no longer than 24 hours after preparation.

Fill each bottle with the correct amount of water, again leave to stand for 10 minutes with lids on.

Bottles do not need to be refrigerated they can be kept in a cupboard or on the counter top in baby area.

There are various different brands of baby formula milk (Cow’s Milk based, Soya based, Goats Milk, Lactose Free, Thickened formula, Allergy formula, Follow-on milks and Ready-made) some instructions vary but generally its 1 level scoop per 30ml/1 ounce. The easiest way to level each scoop is with the back of a knife.

Shake well and insure all powder has dissolved before feeding.

Always test the temperature of the milk before each feed, especially if someone else has heated the bottle. Milk is easily digested when heated.

Throw away any feed that your baby has not taken within two hours. If your baby is a slow feeder use a fresh feed after two hours.

A personal recommendation would be the Philips© “Avent BottleWarmer”. It is an easy, digital way of heating your baby’s milk.  If you are breastfeeding and storing breast milk in the freezer it has a de-frosting setting too. Later on when introducing solids, you can heat up your baby’s food in it which means it is a great investment which potentially will be used every day for up to 8 months.

Equipment needed for bottle feeding

Feeding bottles


Bottle brush

Washing up bowl


Electric bottle warmer

Looking after your sterilizer: throw out the old water, rinse well and dry with paper towel after each use. This saves your sterilizer from breaking down. Also you need to de-scale every 2-4 weeks, depending on how hard the water is in your area. Use citric acid for de-scaling (7 ounces of water for each sachet, and put it on a full cycle.)  Like many appliances if you look after your sterilizer you can easily expect it to last, for Child Number Two and even Number Three.

© Nanny Options

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