Motherhood comes with it's own unique set of questions. Fascinating topics that you probably never thought about before will grace your thoughts daily. Things like is it ok to throw diapers away in regular trash cans? Or do you really have to sanitize your breast pump after each use? And why does storing breast milk have to be so complicated? If your head is pounding with important questions like these, you're not alone. One such question that may be keeping you awake at night is wondering if you can store breast milk in the freezer with other stuff. I mean, are you really even a mom if you're not having nightmares about your frozen peas and ice cream not being about to co-exist with your freshly frozen liquid gold?
In all seriousness though, the answer to your freezer woes is only a search away. Here's what the experts say: according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, you should store your breast milk in an air tight, spill proof container without any tears or leaks. If there are rips in the bag or breaks in the container, bacteria can enter your milk from your freezer.
Similarly, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics warns moms not to overfill the storage bags, as breast milk expands when it freezes, potentially causing the bag to rip or container to break if it's filled to the brim. Allow about an inch or so for expansion and you should be good to go.
And as for how long you can store your milk, Mayo Clinic says it's safe to freeze your breast milk for up to a year. But keep in mind that it should be stored in a deep freezer or middle of a regular freezer, never in the freezer door where the temperature is lowest.
Now pump on, mamas. Because pumping really doesn't have to be as complicated as it seems.