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Women's Health: Postpartum Community
26.1k Members
Avatar universal

Question about FROZEN BREAST MILK

How does everyone defrost their frozen breast milk? Can it be put in the fridge to defrost the night before? How much does everyone store in one container?
I use glass bottles to store mine...some in in 4 oz bottles...but then I have 8 oz bottles....but I am not sure if more than 4 oz frozen would be to much to defrost at one time?
16 Responses
Avatar universal
I'd just put mine in a bowl and run the bag (I stored them in bags that came with the pump) under warm tap water.
93532 tn?1349374050
What little I stored I stored in plastic bags, about 4 ounces at a time. I would thaw it by running it under warm water. Of course that is all the farther I got, my kids never took the breast milk from a bottle or cup : ) Wasted effort on my part!!
167 tn?1374177417
Mine is thawed in a bowl of warm/hot water also. But I use fresh now all the time from what I pump at work. Then I nurse when I'm at home, so all the stock of frozen has been sitting there since July/August. I'm not sure if it will ever even get used ): I have a TON, too. Four HUGE containers full! Mine are the smaller, plastic containers made by Medela. They fit 2.5 oz in each one and even those take forever to thaw.
167 tn?1374177417
Be careful with quick temperature changes with glass. They could break going from frozen to too warm.
171768 tn?1324233699
i use bags specifically made for breast milk (i like the lansinoh brand). i freeze 6 or 12 ounces everyday, so my freezer is quite full! at least dd will get only breast milk for at least after a month when i ween. i store 6 ounces in each bag, but sometimes i'll put in an extra or 2.
i haven't defrosted too often yet- just twice to see how she takes it. i put it in the fridge the day before. the rule is to use it within 24 hours of it being defrosted, and it takes a while to defrost. once rewarmed, it's only good for an hour. only defrost as much as you'll use that day.
note about bags- i haven't experienced this, but belong to a forum where bm handling comes up a lot. apparently, they do sometimes leak, so it's recommended you put it into a ziplock and then warm in warm water.
Avatar universal
I might have missunderstood your comment. But, glass shouldn't be used with breastmilk bc it holds the proteins to it and the baby doesn't get it. Use plastic bottles or baggies.
259022 tn?1212636506
I have a ton of frozen milk, and we use the bags.  I have the lanisoh brand, and many have had holes in them, and we lost 8 ounces because we were thawing it in warm water, and the bad had a hole.  We have also come across some that have gotten freezer burn from a hole in the bag.  So, we switched to gerber brand, but she has only gotten a bottle like 5 times, so not to sure how those work yet, since when she does get a bottle, we give her the oldest milk.
Avatar universal
Jenshim-you can donate the breast milk you dont use.....mabye contact your local le leche league

tmv- I use glass cause it is considered one of the safest...doesnt get the stuff leached into the breast milk that plastic can..breastmilk is actually better preserved in glass...but that just my preference

Thanks everyone





195145 tn?1255640047
Ohhh... I read that you shouldn't use glass to store breastmilk in because certain "stuff" in the breastmilk sticks to the glass and then the baby misses that nutrient...
Avatar universal
It depends where the info is from cause I have read a couple different things regarding it.When it comes to freezing it doesnt matter...it all looses it anyway plastic or glass.
But when it comes to freshly expressed milk...then yes supposedly if given in glass it looses some of its component...but there is debate on that. I have read the glass is the best for freezing it in.
But baby does not rely on getting milk from the bottle...only on occasion  
Remember yrs. ago glass was used. Plastic is cheaper and easier to make...so it has become more readily available...pretty much the only thing that is available.
175662 tn?1282217256
I also use the Lansinoh brand breast milk bags, they have more give and aren't so brittle (I've tried another brand and the bags were really thin).  Rarely have we had any leakage/holes/breakage of the bags.  We freeze them laying down so they are thin and easier to defrost if it needs to happen directly from the freezer.  I freeze anywhere between 4-6 oz in each bag (which during the days I come home for lunch I freeze about 8-18oz a day, but averaging 8oz).  And then storing them in the freezer itself (not in the doors).

We usually defrost them in the refridgerator the night before and then they are warmed up by hot water (not the microwave - I'm super strict about that).  I've been told they can last 3-5 days in the fridge after being thawed but we use within 24 hrs.  
167 tn?1374177417
Freezing alone loses some nutrients, which is why I give Brody what I pump at work fresh the next day. I have thought about donating the milk too. If I don't use it I will definitely contact them to see. I would never be able to throw it out. Or, once he is weaned I could give it to him in a sippy cup instead of milk. I plan on weaning him around a year or so, but we'll see! I think it will be harder on me than it will him (: It's such an intense bond.
175662 tn?1282217256
I totally agree with you Jenshim.  I was talking to my mom about it the other day and how I wanted to exclusively breastfeed for as long as possible.
171768 tn?1324233699
before donating, make sure you research the bank and ask them questions. apparently while some banks get the milk to babies who need it as a nonprofit operation, some banks sell the milk for profit. i haven't had an opportunity to research the validity of what i heard, but apparently on average milk sells for $3/ounce, but one poster said the bank was selling it for $30/ounce?!?  

i also give dd the freshest milk possible- first room temp milk while it's not too long since i pumped. luckily, mine lasts a long time at room temp so after each session i can give 2 fresh feeds. then i go to the fridge. i'm saving the frozen for when i wean, since even with all of it's lost properties, frozen BM is still better than formula.
270405 tn?1293039221
I think it will be hard for me to wean also!  Luckily, my baby is only 3 months old, so I have lots of time left!  I have a ton of milk frozen, but as it is right now, my baby will not take a bottle.  She has had to only a couple of times when I was out, and did not like it one bit.  She prefers the breast for sure!  So I figure if nothing else, I will just give it to her when she is older in a sippy cup or something.  I just like knowing that I have the milk there just in case...I'd rather her get that over formula any day!  I've never thought about donating it though...I wonder what the policy is for that, as far as safety goes.
Avatar universal
I use 2 Tupperware freezermates ice cube trays with lids to freeze my milk into cubes that later my husband can just drop a few cubes into a glass bottle and warm it up in a pan of water on the stove. This way takes less room in my freezer and he can warm up as much as he needs to to satisfy baby.  Each cube holds about an ounce.
As for the plastic bottles. I use them just to pump my milk then freeze the milk into cubes. But for feeding I only use the glass bottles because they won't melt in the pan and there is nothing that sticks to the glass. I've heard from my mother inlaw that with plastic bottles when you wash them with a bottle brush it puts scraches into the plastic on the inside that can trap bacteria.
I think it just depends on what works best for you and your baby!
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