How to clean baby bottles and accessories

I don't know about you, but I'm kind of scared of germs. This is especially true when I have kids, when I need to learn how to sterilize their bottles and accessories. So today, I'm sharing some tips on how to keep baby bottles and accessories clean, straight from the CDC. Let's dig into...

In the dishwasher

Check the packaging of your baby's bottles and pacifiers to see if they are dishwasher safe. Most items tend to be dishwasher safe only on the top rack, so keep that in mind when loading the dishwasher. The CDC recommends that you disassemble and rinse all components before loading them in the dishwasher. When you load them into the dishwasher, put smaller items in such a basket so they don't fall to the bottom of the dishwasher. And run the dishwasher on a hot water and heat dry cycle. Wash hands with soap and warm water before removing items. If they are not completely dry, let them air dry on a clean dry towel.

Hand wash

If you wash your baby bottle by hand, make sure to wash your hands before you start. Separate bottle parts and rinse individually under running water. Don't put them in the sink. Fill a clean container (for cleaning bottle parts and accessories only) with hot water and soap, and place items directly into the container. Scrub items with a clean brush (also only for cleaning your baby accessories). Squeeze through the nipple hole to make sure the hole is clean. Rinse again under running water and allow parts to air dry. Then wash the container and brushes by hand or put them in the dishwasher.

When in doubt, disinfect

Disinfecting feeding items once a day ensures that items stay super clean. (This is only necessary if you are not washing items in the dishwasher with hot water and the heat-dry setting.) To sanitize items after washing them in one of the above methods, check with the item's manufacturer that you should use the following Ways to further sanitize your accessories:

1. Boil

Put items in a pot, cover with water, and bring the water to a boil. Boil for five minutes, then remove items with clean tongs.

2. Steam

Place the disassembled item in the microwave or plug-in steam system and sterilize, cool and dry the item according to the manufacturer's instructions.

3. Bleaching

To prepare a bleach solution in a clean washbasin, add one teaspoon of unscented bleach or water per gallon. Fully submerge the item and check that the solution covers all parts and that there are no air bubbles in the bottle or pacifier. Squeeze the solution through the nipple hole and soak for at least two minutes. Remove with tongs or washed hands. Do not rinse items; any remaining bleach will break down as it dries. Allow all items to dry completely before storing.

Safe storage

Let all of your bottle accessories, bottle brushes and washing containers air dry completely before putting away. Put all the components back together with clean hands. Keep all reassembled items in a protected, clean area, such as an enclosed kitchen cabinet for clean dishes or a cabinet dedicated to all clean baby bottles and accessories.

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