What are Breast Milk Banks?

An option that mothers turn to if they don’t have enough breast milk to feed their babies is to get it from a breast milk bank. They turn to breast milk banks if there is a sudden decrease in their milk production or if they cannot produce any milk at all. They avail of extra breast milk for their babies but they avail it with the breast milk bank because they want to make sure that they are getting healthy breast milk.

Try to produce more milk as possible before going to a breast milk bank. Turn to family and friends first, and ask if they have excess breast milk to spare. That way you can be familiar with the source of the milk and can decipher whether the milk is suitable for your child or not. If there is no source of breast milk from friends and family then go to a pediatrician. Ask the pediatrician if he or she can give you a prescription and recommend a reliable breast milk bank as well.

Once you secure a prescription, proceed to nearest breast milk bank in your area. One reason is that the shipping costs would be significantly lower if the breast milk bank is in close proximity. The second reason is that the milk can be transported from the nearest possible distance. Consult with the breast milk bank regarding their specific mode of payments and shipping procedures. Talk to them about the possibility of discounts and other promos they can offer considering you will order a large volume from them once the baby grows up.

Since the cost of buying milk from a breast milk bank increases as time goes on, you can inquire with your health insurance if it is included in your policy if they will cover all or a portion of the cost of breast milk. Other insurance companies have this kind of provision in their policies.

Make sure there is adequate space in the freezer when you purchase from a breast milk bank. The milk cannot be refreeze again once it thawed so immediately place the milk in the freezer when you receive the shipment. Talk to breast milk banks if they can send it with dry ice, or make sure that the package is sealed for freshness and longer shelf life.

Ways to Increase Breast Milk Supply

Nursing moms face the problem of shortening supply of breast milk. They have to reduce their feeding with their babies yet they still want to keep on breastfeeding. There are many ways to reestablish and increase breast milk supply even after a long break from nursing, or if the mother notices that her milk production is not as much as it once was. Just like in economics, breastfeeding is just a matter of supply and demand and you have to find the proper technique to be comfortable with to fulfill your requirements. There is a direct proportion in the time spends breastfeeding or pumping milk and increasing breast milk supply. Here are the following tips in order to increasing breast milk supply when feeding or pumping.

Tip#1: If pumping, do it more frequently rather than doing it for longer periods. The chances of increasing breast milk are high because the brain will keep on signaling the mammary glands to keep on producing milk due to necessity. This process will be effective if done frequently, let’s say three or four times a day in short periods instead of one or two long periods. Pumping both breasts at the same time will give you the optimum and desired effect. More importantly do not skip a session because this may hinder you to increase breast milk supply.

Place importance in letting your child suckle for milk because this constant bonding plays a major role in increasing breast milk supply. Nursing can be achieved on weekends, or days off or holidays where work does not impede on the bonding sessions. Now, if there are circumstances when you can’t breastfeed your baby directly, you can try viewing a photo of your baby while pumping.

The third step is always to be cautious. The peril of smoking is well documented especially on babies and toddlers. You will not achieve your goal of increasing breast milk supply if you would smoke and the sad part is that the flavor of the milk will change due to nicotine. Eating healthy foods and drinking plenty of fluids, such as juice, water, and milk will keep you hydrated that contributes to milk production.

You should be committed to these guidelines if your goal of increasing breast milk supply for your baby. Your efforts will affect your breast milk production. A lactation professional or your physician should be consulted if you have trouble producing milk.

Warming Breast Milk: Is it Necessary?

Warming breast milk is very important in childcare that is why mothers should always concentrate when they are doing this process. If breast milk is not heated properly, it may lose some of its nutritive properties. At times, mothers think that it is convenient to just heat the milk by using a microwave or a stove when in fact they never realize that by doing so, they are removing some of the milk’s health benefits. There is a reliable way of warming breast milk and preserving the baby’s source of nutrients.

The initial thing to do is to look for a bowl made of glass or metal and fill it halfway with water. Get the breast milk container or storage bag and place it halfway into the water. Let the container stay there for a while until the water is warmed. Keep on adding warm water if the breast milk hasn’t thawed yet. Once the desired temperature is achieved, then remove the container from the bowl. Use a paper towel or dry cloth wipe the moistness from the bottle. Pour some of the contents to a spoon and test the breast milk before transferring it to the bottle. Continue warming the breast milk if you drop some milk inside your wrist and you find it not hot enough. If the milk exceeds the required temperature, just simply leave the bottle for a few minutes and test it again later. Do this over and over until you get the right temperature. Make sure to test always for the temperature.

Warming breast milk is essential in feeding the baby. The temperature of the milk that is being given out by the body should be the same when warming breast milk. The temperature of breast milk is just right for the baby but if you have excess of it, then it should be stored in a cooled place. The temperature should be accurate or precise to the temperature when the milk is nursed. As the babies grow old, they can be weaned from warm milk to cold milk when they drink out of a cup.

Preferably use glass when storing breast milk. So one would not have a hard time when warming breast milk.

The Importance of Breast Milk Storage Bags

There are a lot of essential tools for nursing mothers and breast milk storage bags are one of them. Breast milk storage bags allows the mothers to be away from their babies and at the same time alleviate their worry that their babies are not getting enough food. They need not worry anymore considering mothers can now pump their breast milk and put them in breast milk storage bags. There are breast pumps that are directly connected to the breast milk storage bags so pumping milk in them is hassle-free. After pumping the milk, they can store these breast milk storage bags in the refrigerator or freezer for future use.

It is advisable and at the same time it is a great idea to have breast milk stored in the freezer. There are a lot of unforeseen contingencies and it is better that the babies have ample supply of breast milk in case the mother would be called away from the baby.

Better label the breast milk storage bag of the date as to when breast milk is pumped into it.

This is a significant thing to do because a properly stored breast milk storage bag means a longer shelf life. For the sake of your baby’s health, you should be aware how long the milk has been stored.

If you leave the milk at room temperature, then it should only last between 4 to 8 hours. Refrigerated milk inside a breast milk storage bag, usually lasts from 3 days to a week.

If you think that the milk won’t be consumed within those times, then the next thing to do is freeze it. It is advisable to consume it within 3 to 4 months though and it is important to note that once the frozen milk is thawed, do not refreeze it.

This is why storing milk in the freezer should be in small amounts. This is because once the frozen breast milk storage bag is thawed, you cannot refreeze it again and if the baby is not capable of finishing the contents of the bag, then it would just go to waste. You should consider putting in small portions inside the breast milk storage bag so there would be less waste. If you are conserving resources, you can use other items such as sterilized baby food jars in lieu of breast milk storage bags.

Pumping Breast Milk 101

Mothers want only the best for the baby, hence their preference only for breast milk but there are times that mothers have to go and leave the house for errands and for employment. Babies still need breast milk so mothers need to learn the basic of pumping breast milk. You must be aware that pumping breast milk only becomes a chore when you do not know what to do. The following tips below should help you have an idea on how to properly express milk.

Note: Before babies are introduced to bottle-feeding, make sure they are already accustomed to breast-feeding. This is because you need your child to suckle from time to time in order to stimulate your brain to produce milk.

When pumping breast milk you may either use an electric pump or a manual pump. However, choosing the right pump is entirely dependent on your needs, if you need to pump everyday, then switch to electric and if you need to pump from time to time, then the manual pump is enough.

Expressing milk through an electric breast pump is easy, you should just use a breast shield on the nipple and the machine would automatically suction the milk. This is the same with a manual breast pump with the only difference is that you have to squeeze it manually without the help of a motor. Most breast pumps mimic the sucking motion of a baby and it will not cause too much pain than it normally does. There is no discomfort however you should always placed the phalanges properly because if one commits a mistake, it might lead to irritation and accidental self-pinching. If there is irritation or engorgement that occurs after pumping breast milk, better use a breast feeding nipple cream or simply rub small amounts of milk over the affected area.

When it comes to storing milk, be sure to keep the milk in amounts that your baby normally consumes. If the baby consumes an average of 3 ounces, then the storage amount should always equitable to what the baby takes in. The milk should sit first after pumping breast milk before storing it at 0 degrees Fahrenheit.

How to Store Breast Milk Properly

Breastfeeding has been part of human nature for 500 years now according to breastfeeding specialist, Pat Thomas. For the last 60 years however, out of convenience, humans turn to “formula milk”.

Since it was proven that breast milk is better than powdered milk because it contains more nutritional ingredients and antibodies that prevents diseases that lessens risks of death in infants, the World Health Organization is encouraging every mother to nurse their babies. Breastfeeding however is a tiring task, considering babies need to feed every three hours even till the wee hours of the morning. One solution to solve this problem is storing breast milk. Here are some simple things you can do to save energy when storing breast milk and keep it safe for your baby.

Expressed milk may be kept in different storage containers such as standard baby bottles (glass or plastic) and custom-purpose for storing breast milk bags. If you want to make sure that the milk is the same with room temperature, use a thermometer. If you want to milk to remain fresh for four hours, makes sure that the room temperature is 27 degrees Celsius and for ten hours, another 6 degrees Celsius lower. Storing it below 16 degrees Celsius guarantees the shelf life of the milk for more than 24 hours. On the other hand, be reminded that this method of storing breast milk is best for a short period time. For longer storage period, there are other alternative ways.

The milk will have a shelf life of at least five days if you store it in a refrigerator with a temperature of 4 degrees Celsius. If you are expressing milk more than you used to and plan to keep it for a little while, it’s ideal to keep it in a freezer. It has a shelf life of six months if it is in deep freeze with constant 19 degrees Celsius. Don’t store the milk from the door if one has a self –defrosting freezer so it can still last for at least 3 months. If there is no space in the freezer, it is important to note that the milk will only last for two weeks.

Properly storing breast milk will ensure the safety of your child because the risk of milk contamination is lessened.

How to Increase Breast Milk Production?

Nursing mothers always worry if their babies will have an ample supply of food in case there is a sudden decrease of breast milk production. There is a lingering feeling of worry that once their breast milk production goes down, they have to switch to bottled formula to supplement their babies’ food intake. Well the first step of increasing breast milk production is to ease those worries away since there are several and simple ways to boost breast milk production as soon as possible.

An easy way to increase breast milk production is to let the baby keep on feeding every time he or she wants to. They should be able to suckle all they want. When they frequently breast feed, the body will receive the message and the brains in turn would instruct the mammary glands to keep on producing milk.

Drink a lot of liquids so there would be enough breast milk production. You should replace the amount of liquids that the baby consumes from you by drinking the same amount or more. There should be adequate protein and fat in your diet. You should be aware of your weight because if there is a sudden decrease, it may lead to a decline in breast milk production.

Rests as much as possible, even if you cannot sleep, try to be relaxed and calm. The feeling of ease and peace of mind helps in increasing breast milk production. There is an increase in Oxytocin production if you can bond with the baby by holding him or her while he or she is sleeping.

Try offering both breasts during feeding. Let the baby find nourishment in one breast until he or she slows down before switching to another breast. Proper latch is important so that the baby can feed properly and in turn, it also helps in increasing breast milk production. Beyond the nipple and right on the areola part, the baby’s lip should be latched there.

In between feedings, use a breast pump for five to 10 minutes on each breast for stimulation and increase breast milk production. The objective of this exercise is to stimulate the organs to increase breast milk production.

Finally if you need additional assistance, contact a lactation specialist so they can help you with proper latching and feeding patterns.

Freezing Breast Milk: Storing for Future Use

A lot of people attribute superlative achievements and strengths to superheroes yet being a super mom garners the same qualities. Though raising kids requires a lot of time, generating financial security is also a priority. Fear not, especially if you are a working mom and need to nurse your baby because the solution is freezing your breast milk.

There are a lot of advantages when it comes to freezing breast milk, from convenience to healthy solutions. Here are some guidelines on how to freeze and defrost breast milk.

There are different containers available to keep breast milk. But it is best to get a specially designed plastic bags or bottles for freezing breast milk. You should use the right container because utilizing a wrong one may lead to the milk’s expansion when it freezes.

Seal the plastic or the zip lock with a masking tape when using plastic bags for freezing. A larger bag should be used to prevent punctures. There are manufacturers of breast milk bags who produce a bag with easy sealing and thick bags. The bags should be labeled properly regarding the date of extraction and the amount of milk contained before the milk should be placed.

It is a possibility that you can combine previously extracted milk with the current fresh stock you have. However you should allow the expressed milk to solidify before adding it with other frozen milk. Another condition is that the new milk should be less than the previous extracted milk. Breast milk’s shelf life is prolonged if you know the concepts of freezing breast milk. Milk can now be stored for about a year if you have a -20 degree Celsius freezer and half that time on a regular freezer. Now, defrosting milk may seem like a tedious task but its really not. It is ready to be placed in a feeding bottle after it is thawed out by warm water. Defrosted milk may be kept for as long as 24 hours in the refrigerator. Though it would be better to give it to the baby as soon as possible after thawing.

Choosing the Best Breast Milk Storage Containers

A lot of people often inquire what are the right breast milk storage containers. There is a wide selection of breast milk storage containers to pick from. This is an important matter to consider since this is where excess milk can be placed and used for future feedings in case the mother is away or unavailable to nurse the infant. The glass bottles, plastic containers, breast milk ice trays and storage bags made up of the wide selection of containers that one can choose from.

Before putting milk on the preferred breast milk storage container, it should always be thoroughly cleaned. Breast milk storage containers should be washed with soapy water and rinsed well. Always label the containers with the date of the breast milk and always use the oldest breast milk first.

The preferred choice of mothers as the best milk storage container is the glass bottle. They prefer glass because it retains most of the nutritive contents of the milk. There are people who prefer other breast milk storage containers because they think using glass is impractical and inconvenient.

Plastic breast milk storage containers are also recommended as great breast milk storage device. When using this type of container, it must only have one tight sealing lid. Users of plastic breast milk storage containers point out the practicality and the durability of this product. It is suggested that only minimal amounts should be stored in plastic containers because once the breast milk is thawed it can be refreeze. If there is excess milk, then unfortunately it would be discarded and considered as a waste. Precious resource would be wasted.

Saving precious resource is why people turn to breast milk storage trays. You can store the breast milk in smaller quantities. They can be purchased as packs of two with spaces for one ounce of milk at a time. They are also toxic free; they don’t contain any materials that are hazardous to the baby. The only disadvantage of this breast milk storage counter is you cannot determine which is the older cube.

Finally, look for the breast milk storage container that is not heavy on the pocket and is very suitable for your situation.

Business Opportunities With Breast Milk

When you have intentions of selling breast milk, think of the multitudes of people that you can aid. From an entrepreneur’s point of view, think of the commissions or profit that middlemen would make by selling breast milk. You can help mother who don’t have the capability to nurse their infants or you can also help abandoned infants or babies who tragically have no mothers, access to healthy and nutritious milk. Breast milk is a precious commodity and only a few has access to it so why waste it by throwing it down the drain. Donation may be an alternative but if you can make a few money out of it, then why not sell it?. Just check on the following information on how to sell your breast milk.

The first step in selling breast milk is having gainful knowledge of your medical history. When your customers ask for this you should be ready to share it and add also information on your lifestyle? Are you a heavy drinker or do you drink once in a while? Do you smoke cigarettes or cigars, or worse drugs? Do you have any allergic reactions? Do you exercise and at the same time supplement this with multi vitamins? Be sure to give accurate information so you can be considered to be a reliable breast milk source.

The second step is saving your excess breast milk. You should place them in airtight containers or storage bags and then keep it in cool place for a longer shelf life. Put them into bags equally, measure them and put them into double bags, and then label the important information like the date when the milk is nursed, and the measurement. Then put the milk in the freezer.

Looking for buyers of your breast milk would be the next advisable step. You can advertise you are selling breast milk in websites or you can look for buyers through search engines. You can be negotiable as the price ranges from $5 to $10 dollars per ounce.

You can also tinker with the prices by adding your medical history as a premium or offer huge discounts if they order in large quantities. It is up to you on how to price the milk.

The final step of selling your breast milk would be payment and shipping. There are a lot of options but it is advisable to have a pay pal account or a money order transfer. Once payment is paid, then you can pack it in a disposable cooler and send it to via overnight mail or tell the shipping company it’s an express delivery. The shipping expenses should be shouldered by the customers and you can also charge extra if you include dry ice.