Baby Bottle Warmers – why do you need them?
Mom's need to be careful when heating pumped breastmilk or formula. If you heat breastmilk in the microwave it can change the milk's composition which cause the milk to lost certain anti-infectious properties and nutrients even when microwaved for a short amount of time. This is why they are very effective and why most newborn parents are buying them. Breastmilk is generally very sensitive to warm temperatures and can very eaily lose it's vitamin C content. Heating breastmilk on the stove is also ineffective because it causes a central spike in temperature which cause the breaskmilk to break apart. Just like microwaved breastmilk, it causes a loss of minerals, immunological properties, vitamins and micro-nutrients very quickly. So what can you do? You can obviously put the pumped breastmilk in a sterilized bottle and run it under hot water for ten minutes – but who wants to do this when a newborn is screaming because he or she is starving? The same thing goes with formula. For years doctors have been saying that microwaving formula causes terrible heat distribution which can burn babies' mouth's and bellies. Although most people shake bottles to avoid this – it always does not work because heat tend to re-conglomerate immediately. Warming the water is a much safer method.
How do you use baby bottle warmers?
Most can easily heat pumped breastmilk and formula in about one to three minutes. They are very convenient because if the baby's room is up you can keep the warmer up there also. By the time you change your newborn's diaper the baby bottle warmer could easily have warmed up 3 or 4 ounce of milk. They are very easy-to-use, quick and reliable. You would never need to worry that your new babysitter will over cook a bottle in the microwave. I bought one of the Philips Avent iQ baby Bottle Warmers and it works like a charm. You just add water into the container and select setting. You put the bottle in and close the lid and leave it. The baby bottle warmer heats the milk by very quickly evaporate the water and heats the breastmilk without any hotspots and without breaking down the milk's composition. Now that my baby is up to about 4 ounces, I can warm a bottle up in about 3.5 minute to heat the milk to a perfect temperature.
Who would have known that heating breastmilk or formula would be such a science !! On top of the great advantages noted above, I find that my baby simply prefers warm milk so it is perfect for me. It is very convenient, it does not take up a lot of room and I can easily put it in any cupboard when I am done with it. It is very compact and you can take it into any room! A little hint for most of the bottle warmer out there – if you can use distilled water then do it. Otherwise if you use tap water, your baby bottle warmers will have some mineral build up.
So are baby bottle warmers a necessity?
I think so. I think that if parents are going to bottle feed their baby pumped breastmilk once in a while or formula, if is an absolute necessity. Not only does it have many advantages but they are very simple to use. You add water and stick the bottle in. When it's done warming the baby bottle warmer lights up and that's that. Shake the bottle and feed the baby. The baby bottle warmers on the market today are able to hold both big thicker newborn bottles, short, tall or skinny bottles. They work great at night and you can do the whole process with one hand.
Which ones would I recommend?
Definitely the Philips Avent. It's been fantastic for my husband and I. The First Years Night & Day Bottle Warmer System is a good one because it is also a bottle cooler. If I were to do it again I would probably buy the Gerber Bottle Warmer or the Munchkin Deluxe Bottle And Food Warmer With Pacifier Cleaning Basket. The Gerber Electric Bottle Warmer has great reviews and is fantastic to travel with. The Philips Avent Express Baby Food and Bottle Warmer is also a great baby bottle warmer.
Remember using a microwave for pumped breast milk and formula is never recommended for heating your baby bottle. Not only is it difficult to judge how long you should heat the bottle for, it breaks up it causes a loss of minerals, immunological properties, vitamins and micro-nutrients very quickly. Hot spot are a danger to sensitive babies. You can run bottles under hot water but why wait ten minute and keep checking. This is the greatest gift we got for our newborn. These are revolutionary products that will warm frozen breast milk very safely, quickly and without destroying the important vitamin and nutrients that babies need. The advanced thermostatic controls on them and the thermal fuse allows you to warm bottles, disposable bags with frozen pumped breastmilk without boiling or over-heating. Another hint – get one with a timer !!