Checklist for parents-to-be (Sterilisers)

3 01 2008

For at least the first year, it is important that the feeding bottles are properly washed, and sterilised to prevent bacteria contamination.

There are 2 forms of sterilising: boiling method, or by chemical tablets.

Boiling method

This method uses the steam generated to sterilise the feeding bottles and teats. The equipment used could be either taking a big pot of water, boil it, then put the bottles and teats in, or by steam sterilisers.

With the convenience these days, many parents would consider getting a steam steriliser. There are many types and brands in the market, again, not all are made equal.

Most brands offer either the electrical steam steriliser or the microwave steam steriliser. I can only comment on the electrical steam steriliser which is what I’m still using now.

Avent

Avent steam steriliser can accommodate up to 6 wide neck bottles at one round of steaming. One of the models has a special rack for sterilising the Avent breast pump and this would be useful for parents who are using their brand of products.

The 2 models in Avent’s range complete a steam cycle in 6-8 mins. For more details, check their website or the actual model in the stores.

NUK

Our friends got this for us. The NUK steam steriliser is able to accomodate 6 milk bottles, and because of the height of the tray and the cover, we are able to sterilise the bottle caps with the teats as well. The steam steriliser opens up to reveal mid-way of the bottle and the accessories tray, allowing you to access the bottles easily.

The sterilising cycle takes about 15mins to complete, and 60ml of water. To clean the metal plate (it is important to keep this clean and free from deposits for the steam cycle to complete in the same time), use 1 part vinegar, 2 parts water and leave it for 20-30mins. Then wipe off the solution. Be careful not to put in too much solution that will cover over the metal plate and touch on the plastic areas, as it will corrode the plastic areas.

How did I know? I was a “victim” of being too enthusiastic with the vinegar solution. After 8 months of using the steriliser, we found that it was leaking, because there was a hole near the metal plate area.

Lucky Baby

Another steriliser that a friend gave to us, the design for the steriliser could fit teats and 6 bottles, however, the cover was too short, so we can’t sterilise the NUK bottle caps.

The steam cycle is less than 10 mins. It uses more water than the NUK steriliser, and because the design is such that you have to reach inwards to put in the bottles, after steaming, do not attempt to remove the bottles immediately. It’s not as accessible, and I feel that it’s hard to pour the water into the sterilising plate.

Pigeon

This steam steriliser can fit up to 6 milk bottles, milk teats and accessories. The steam cycle finishes in 6 mins. The design is similar to the Tollyjoy version, where you open the steriliser from the top and most parts of the tray is deep within the steriliser. The package comes with tongs for retrieval of bottles.

Chemical sterilising method

This uses sterilising tablets, you can put one sterilising tablet into one container filled with water, and put all your milk bottles and accessories in. The sterilising takes longer, and I personally feel that it leaves a chemical after-taste/smell, so it’s best to rinse the bottles and accessories with boiled water before usage.

Be prepared for a lot of washing, cleaning of bottles and milk teats during the intial period. The newborn babies always seem hungry 😛