I always wondered whether it was a ploy by formula brands for us to spend more money because of this ‘2-hour rule,’ but now that I think and have researched it, I believe our babies health is in their interests. The message of the bottle or tub, whichever you buy is always that saying “For hygienic reasons, discard unfinished feed in the bottle as soon as possible and always within 2 hours.” Not many of my friends feed their babies formula but the discussions I have had with mums at the local children centre always falls around this topic and it’s interesting to hear different peoples views and opinions. Is the 2-hour rule for real or just plain bullshit to get us mums to spend extra coins buying more and more formula because whatever bottle you get, it’s not cheap. I buy on average 2 tubs of formula a week. The formula I buy is SMA’s Comfort Milk which worked perfectly in helping Emily go from breastfeeding to bottle because it was easy for her to digest and easy on her tummy. 2 bottles of her formula is £22 a week, that’s £88 per month on formula. Formula is expensive but it goes with the choice I made feeding Emily, as breastfeeding didn’t work. Anyway, on every bottle and every tub details the same information. ‘Don’t leave formula for longer than 2 hours,’ or ‘if it’s sitting out at room temperature for longer than an hour, throw it away’ and so on. The thing is the question is, why do they say it, is what they’re saying true or just complete crap in order for us to spend more money?
- Sterilize all baby bottles
- Use boiling hot water from a kettle, not a tap
- Don’t keep formula out for long. If you don’t use it within 2 hours, throw it away
- Never reuse old formula
- Make sure you mix the formula properly
How long can mixed formula keep in the fridge?
You should always refrigerate any bottles you fill for later feedings to prevent bacteria from growing, as well as any open containers of ready-to-feed or concentrate formula. Throw away any mixed formula after 24 hours and any open ready-to-feed or concentrate formula after 48 hours.
How long can a bottle keep at room temperature?
Discard any prepared or ready-to-feed formula that’s been sitting out after 1 hour.
If formula is left over, can I offer it again?
No, throw away any leftover formula. There’s a chance bacteria may have formed since the last feeding, which could make your baby sick.
Times have changed, but it seems advice over the years has changed too. Gone are the days when you can make formula and leave it in the fridge for a long period of time and gone are the days when you just need to rely on a kettle too. With so many products made now to cut your formula prep in half, there’s really no need to worry about having leaving your formula out. If only someone could come up with an affordable alternative to make formula bottles on the go! Tommee Tippee, Nuby, anyone?