Storing breastmilk can be confusing, but it doesn't have to be! Here are a few of my tips and recommendations when storing and feeding human milk.
Milk can be stored in a glass container with a leakproof lid, a BPA-free hard plastic container with a leakproof lid, or polyethylene breastmilk freezer storage bags.
You will want to store milk in a quantity that your baby is likely to take in one feeding to avoid wasting any leftover milk in the container. For babies 1-2 weeks old, this may be approximately 2-3 oz. per feeding. For babies 1-6 months, approximately 3-5 oz. per feeding.
Label your milk storage containers with the date and amount of milk in the container.
When you’re choosing frozen milk, use the oldest first.
There are a few ways to thaw frozen breast milk. Letting milk thaw in the refrigerator overnight, running the container under warm water, or setting it in a container of warm water to thaw are all great ways to defrost milk. Do not use a microwave to warm breastmilk. Microwaving may cause the loss of some of the beneficial properties of the milk. Microwaves also do not heat liquids evenly, this may leave hot spots in the container of milk which can be a danger to baby.
Here is a chart of my personal recommendation for breastmilk storage. These guidelines fit within the guidelines of the La Leche League. Print this chart and place it on your refrigerator for quick reference! I also keep magnetic copies of this chart for all of my clients!