sterilising home

Why Sterilising is Important

The World Health Organisation and the Department of Health recommend that you breastfeed your baby exclusively for the first six months of life and continue to breastfeed in combination with suitably safe complementary foods until the child is two years of age and beyond.

If you choose not to breastfeed your baby, the food your baby will receive is powdered infant formula.  It is important that your baby’s formula feed is safely prepared and stored. Before you are discharged home from the maternity hospital your nurse or midwife will show you how to do this. Your nurse or midwife will also give you written information and you can also visit, or go to the following links.  or

Part of the preparation of your baby’s formula feed is that all feeding equipment including bottles and teats need to be washed well and sterilised thoroughly before you prepare your baby’s formula feed.

Sterilising Equipment

There are a number of  options for sterilising your baby’s feeding equipment. Further information on the sterilising of equipment is on the following links

Steam Sterilising

These are free standing electrical units, where you place your bottles, teats and other equipment into the unit with a specified amount of water and switch the unit on.

Sterilising takes about 8-12 minutes, excluding cooling time, after which the unit will turn itself off. Bottles will remain sterilized for approximately 3 hours.

Different brands may vary however, so read the manufacturer’s instructions carefully.

Microwave Sterilising

For this method, you place the bottles in a microwave safe sterilizer, provided with a small amount of water, fasten the lid and place the microwave according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Sterilisation takes about ten minutes.

Chemical Sterilising

Make up the solution using tablets or liquid, following the manufacturer’s instructions.

Submerge the equipment in the solution making sure there is no air trapped in the bottles or teats. Your sterilising tank should have a plunger to keep all equipment under the water.

Leave in the solution for at least 30 minutes.

It is important that a fresh solution is made up and changed every 24 hours