Making Up a Bottle of Formula
Measuring the correct amount of water and powder is very important to ensure your baby puts on weight at a healthy rate.
Too much powder will leave your baby dehydrated, whereas too little will leave your baby hungry. Carefully check the instructions on your packet of powdered formula for the measurements of water and powder then follow these steps:
Sterilise bottle, teat, retaining ring and cap. (See 'Sterilising Baby Bottles' for instructions)
Clean the surface on which you will be preparing the feed.
Wash your hands thoroughly and dry with a clean cloth.
Place all parts of the bottle on the counter using sterilised tongs.
Boil fresh tap water in a kettle or in a pan on the hob. If abroad use bottled water, not tap water, but it must still be boiled.
Leave the water to cool for about 25 minutes (it should still be over 70 degrees Celcius).
Pour the desired amount of water into the bottle. The water should always go in before the powder because the measurement will be more accurate.
Add the number of scoops of powder specified on the packet using the scoop provided. Fill the scoop and level it off using a leveler if provided, otherwise use a clean knife.
Assemble the bottle with the teat and retaining ring. Place the cap on and shake the bottle until the powder has dissolved.
Check the temperature of the formula by squeezing a few drops on your wrist. It should feel lukewarm. If it feels too hot, run the bottle with the cap on under a cool tap then dry with a clean cloth.
Once you have followed these steps you will be ready to feed your baby. For more information on how to bottle feed your baby comfortably visit our 'Tips for Bottle Feeding Comfortably' page.
Ready Made Formula MilkThis can be purchased in cartons and can be convenient when you're on the go. The NHS recommends ready made formula for premature babies and babies with a low birth weight. All you do is fill your baby's bottle with the milk and warm it up, or if your baby prefers it room temperature you're ready to go! Remember, you should never use a microwave to warm up baby feed - have a look at 'Storing and Re-Warming Bottles' for tips on how to do it properly.
The World Health Organization (WHO) strongly recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life and states that babies fed exclusively on breast milk for their first six months will develop most healthily.
Visit our Breastfeeding Section