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Collecting and Storing Breast Milk

Situations arise where you may need to be separated from your baby; school, work or an evening out. When this occurs, you may wish to pump and store your milk ahead of time. There are a number of different breast pumps available and you will need to find the one that fits your needs.

Breast milk may be stored in the refrigerator for 48 hours. To freeze breast milk, first cool it in the refrigerator, and then put it into the freezer. Frozen breast milk should be used within 3 months if it is stored in the freezer compartment of a refrigerator. Milk stored in a deep freezer is good for 6 months. Remember to label the breast milk with the date that you pumped it. Thaw milk in the refrigerator or in warm water just before feeding. Thawed milk must be used within 24 hours. Note: freezing breastmilk destroys some of its antibodies.

You may introduce a bottle of breast milk or formula at 2-3 weeks of age (2-3 times/week). This is enough to get your baby used to a bottle, but not so much that it will compromise your breast milk supply.

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