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How to Reheat Breast Milk

Test the Milk Before Giving It to Baby

After you have warmed the breast milk, it is important to always test the temperature before letting your baby drink it. Even if you've done your "warming routine" a hundred times and warmed up the milk in the exact same way, make sure to always test it. Skipping this step could cause heartbreaking results if your baby drinks milk that burns his or her mouth.
 
There are several ways to test the temperature. You can try the time-honored method of just squirting a few drops on your inner wrist. The skin on this part of your arm is thin and quite sensitive, so it can help you gauge how the milk will feel inside your baby's mouth. The milk should feel warm, not hot.
 
After you have warmed the milk, make sure to gently invert the bottle at least 10 times to ensure the temperature is even throughout. 
 

I've Thawed Milk -- Can I Refreeze It?

Once you have thawed out breast milk, it is generally recommended that you don't refreeze it. However, it usually takes frozen milk about 24 hours to thaw in the refrigerator -- if it has been less than eight hours since you put it in the refrigerator, it is safe to refreeze it.
 
Once you have warmed it to room temperature or above, it is best not to return it to the refrigerator or the freezer.
 
When a baby drinks from a bottle, bacteria from the baby's mouth enter the bottle during feeding. Although breast milk contains antibacterial components that would help prevent bacterial growth, it is usually recommended that you discard any remaining milk within one to two hours after the baby has finished feeding.
 

That About Sums It Up

Although the process of expressing, storing, thawing, and warming breast milk involves several important factors, once you get the process down, it will become easier and easier. Following these simple steps can help ensure that the quality of your breast milk is kept to a high standard, with as little damage as possible. You will rest easy knowing that during those times where you can't be there to breastfeed your baby, he or she is still getting your valuable breast milk.
 
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