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Thread: Pumping info and maintenance questions

  1. #1

    Default Pumping info and maintenance questions

    I am just starting to pump a little bit each day. With no other resources, I am stumped with a few questions. I have a medela pump.

    1. Every third to fourth time, you are supposed to sterilize the equipment, but do you have to sterilize the bottle that you pump into or it is okay to wash it in soap and water every time (I pump into a bottle and then pour it into a medela bag)?

    2. How are you supposed to store the tubing? I know you don't have to sterilize it unless milk gets in there but what if you drop it on the floor? Is it safe to put in the bag, or should I keep it in a plastic baggie?

    3. Can you store milk in the fridge for a couple of days and then freeze it when you see that it may not get used in time?

    4. If you take a bottle of milk out of the fridge, can it stay at room temp for a few hours if not heated up?

    5. Can you switch boobs with the same pump/tubing immediately without washing anything off?

    6. How do you clean equipment if you are in a place with no soap and water, i.e. a car or work?

    7. Where do most people store the milk if having to pump at work?

    These were a few things I could not find on the internet or instructions. Thanks for your help! Please add anything else I may have missed.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2012

    Default Re: Pumping info and maintenance questions

    Here are my answers to your questions:
    1. I sterilize both bottles and equipment.
    2.I have an APY system. I keep all of my pump parts together along w bottles in my cooler/tote bag.
    3. I will store milk in freezer after 2-3 days if I see I wont be using it.
    4. DH will try and use bottle asap, but no later than 2. He will end up takung a new bottle out of the fridge at that time.
    5.I switch boobs all the time.
    6.That's a good one! I dont clean pump parts after every session while at wrk. I place the parts in my cooler in the fridge! Saves time. So I would just place them inside the cooler.
    7.I place my bag in the fridge. But if I forget its okay because I have 3 ice packs in there so it stays cool!

    Btw im just a newbie too! 4th month at wrk and finally getting a lactation room!
    I am so blessed!


    2 's in heaven

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2012

    Default Re: Pumping info and maintenance questions

    I actually leave everything assembled and out (not even a rinse) between sessions at work. I just put the bottles into my cooler bag with an ice pack.

    I'm sure that wouldn't work for some people but I get the impression that everybody's milk has a slightly different shelf life. I've never had a problem so...

    Now it's not like they're out in my car - its an air conditioned building.

    I have also used a bottle of cooled, then warmed, then refrigerated milk at least 24 hours later.

    My DD rejects milk if it's turned and has almost never been sick (10 months old).

    Anyway I think the whole process is much more robust than you'd think unless you have lipase or some other issue. Or maybe I have bionic milk!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2012

    Default Re: Pumping info and maintenance questions

    I'll give you my answers:
    1. I have never heard this. I sterilized before the first use but I pump 3 times a day and there is no way I'm going to sterilize every night. I just wash with hot soapy water and let air dry (pump parts and bottles). I don't see the point of sterilizing the pump parts without sterilizing the bottles, too, but for a healthy, full-term baby, I don't think you need to sterilize either. Please someone correct me if I'm wrong!
    2. I just coil the tubing up and tuck it in the little mesh pocket on the front of my bag. I don't worry about it touching other surfaces because it doesn't contact milk. If I dropped it on a particularly dirty floor I might wash with hot soapy water and whip it around to dry.
    3. I do.
    4. I do. One thing I read that helped me figure out all kinds of questions about milk handling (the official milk storage guidelines don't cover every situation): Milk is food. You can generally handle it like you do other food. I would not be concerned about drinking a glass of cow's milk that had been sitting out in a relatively cool room for a few hours. I would probably not drink milk that had been sitting in a hot and sunny window all day. How it smells can provide clues. Same ideas generally apply to breast milk (for healthy babies).
    5. Yes.
    6. I think the easiest thing to do is to not clean them at all but just keep all of the parts cold with ice packs in a small cooler.
    7. I store them with an ice pack in a small insulated cooler that came with my pump. A lunch box would work really well too and might also hold your pump parts and keep them cold between pumping sessions.

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