You will need to sterilise all your milk storage bottles or containers (if not using pre-sterilised milk pouches), all your breast pump equipment (that comes in contact with your breast and the milk) and the baby's feeding equipment. This reduces the potential growth of any bacteria in the breast milk. Also, a baby's immune system is immature when born, therefore any of the baby's feeding equipment (whether breast or bottle feeding) and dummies, should be sterilised for at least the first 6 months after birth.
There are 3 main ways you can sterilise bottles and equipment. These are:
No matter which method of sterilisation you choose, you need to prepare the bottles and equipment before they can be sterilised. Even if the sterilisation process is carried out correctly, the bottles and equipment will not be made sterile if they have remnants of milk left on them. Therefore soon after expressing or feeding the milk to your baby, rinse all the equipment in cold water.
Once rinsed, scrub all the equipment in warm to hot soapy water (using dishwashing liquid). Use a bottle brush to clean inside the breast pump receptacles, bottles and inside teats (or use your finger or turn the teats inside out to clean inside them) and squirt water through the teat hole to make sure it is not blocked with milk. After cleaning all the equipment, rinse it all thoroughly in cold water again. Now everything is ready for sterilising.
Image 11-85 shows cleaning a bottle with a bottle brush in warm soapy water.
Image 11-86 shows squirting water through a teat to clear the hole of any milk.