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    Includes Expert Content
    When can I stop sterilizing baby bottles?
    FloraGarrihy posted:
    My little girl is 3 1/2 months old and my mother keeps telling me that I don't need to sterilize the bottles/nipples anymore. My daughter's pediatrician told me that sterilizing wasn't necessary at all if I wash the bottles in hot, soapy water or in the dishwasher on the top rack. What do I do? Is it safe to stop sterilizing the bottles? Or should I just keep going?
    phoenix31674 responded:
    You only need to sterilize before the first use, after that you can just wash in the dishwasher or by hand. But if it makes you feel better, keep sterilizing. So your doctor is right. Bottle packages even say that you only need to do so before first use.
    STheo responded:
    I agree that you can stop sterilizing bottles. I believe that one of the reason that I read was due to the tiny amount of chlorine that is added to tap water therefore making it safe to just wash bottles with hot water and soap.
    JessHeath responded:
    I'm one of those moms that just brushes off the nuk and hands it back to my kid so I will tell you that you are putting a lot of unnecessary energy into sterilizing bottles. I do breastfeed (well I pump and bottle feed most of the time) so the antibodies make that more safe I think but I am in the camp that a little bit of bacteria makes the baby stronger and my daughter who is 3 has never gotten an illness from an unsterilized bottle or a nuk on the floor but she has probably eaten her fairshare of doghair. I wash my bottles in the dishwasher, the dishwasher really gets really hot and kills most of the stuff. But honestly, you can't put your kid in a bubble, they are more exposed to germs in the public....bathrooms, playrooms at the mall/church/playground are incredible petri dishes of germs, etc and UNLESS your child is immunocompromised, I believe you can loosen up a bit on the sterilization.
    Dan Brennan, MD responded:
    Hi - As long as your water source is clean, then you can probably just use hot soapy water. Some homes on well water may have higher bacteria counts present in their tap water - in this situation sterilizing is probably a good idea.

    Dr. Dan

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