When I first gave birth I knew right away I wanted to breastfeed as long as possible. This came with 101 questions and more. Luckily I had my doula to help me along with several questions and now I’m going on 7 months of breastfeeding/pumping.
One of my questions was about keeping breast milk out vs putting it in the fridge vs freezing it. I didn’t want any of my liquid gold going bad because I wasn’t sure how long I would have a supply for.
You’ll know if your milk has gone bad by the smell, but if you still can’t tell..
The answer to that question was simple. Babies won’t drink the milk if it’s bad.
If you try and give your LO milk and they reject it, rest assured that you can throw it out.
(FYI: this may happen anyway if you have too much citrus in your diet or something else your LO doesn’t take a liking to. I learned this by being sick and stocking up on lemon juice, grapefruit juice, orange juice, emergen-c and my LO was not having it those couple of days.)
Other than that.. your milk stays good in the fridge 3-5 days after you pump. And it stays good anywhere from 3-12 months in the freezer depending if you have a small, normal or deep freezer.
My advice is just date and freeze the milk after each pump. You’ll want to take as much air out as possible when sealing. Then you’ll want to lay your bag flat in your freezer until frozen and then reposition them upright to conserve space so that they’re like little files.
It takes about 3-5 minutes of running it under hot water to get it to a temperature similar to it coming out of your breast.
Make sure not to give it to your baby a second time if he or she doesn’t finish your frozen breast milk. Once unfrozen, you give it to your baby and if he or she doesn’t finish, you throw it out!
I’d love to hear your thoughts or answer any questions you may have!