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Picking A Bottle

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-Hi. You're watching Parents TV. I'm Jessica Hartshorn. I'm a Senior Lifestyle Editor for American Baby Magazine and I'm joined together by Heather Maclean, the author of The Baby Gizmo Buying Guide. Today, we're gonna talk about bottles and bottling supplies. Thank you for joining us, Heather, with all your stuff. -Thank you for having me. -Okay. So, when you're gonna bottle-feed your baby- -Yes. -Which you might do whether you're doing that exclusively or breastfeeding and just wanna give an occasional bottle- -Yes. -Either way, you're probably gonna end up with bottles in your house. -Yes. -And where do we even begin to shop? -Well, that's one of the items that moms think they choose, but, actually, the baby chooses for you. It's all about what your baby will take and it's especially important if you are still breastfeeding and supplementing or using the bottle so other people can feed. The baby needs to love the bottle. So, what I recommend is buying one of everything. They're only about $4. Test on your baby and, when you find one that you love, buy as many again. -Okay. -And the real- there are many styles of bottles. There is a standard bottle and the wide-necked bottle, the angled bottle for better air flow. They don't get as many gas bubbles. There are bottle systems as well which come with special nipples to cut down on gas. Dr. Browns has a really fancy system. And then, the drop in disposal liners with Playtex. -Which can make cleaning easier. -Yes, can make cleaning easier. So, all of them, bottles are a pain to watch no matter what. But if you find a bottle that's a good match for your baby, it's well worth it. -Okay. -Excitement in thinking about it. You should just go out and get a couple of different ones- -Yes. -Maybe talk to your friends and see what [unk]. -You won't know until the baby's born. So, I would buy one of each. Don't register for the 12-pack of any kind. -Okay. -Because, then, you've ripped it open and your baby doesn't like it. -Right. -And you're done. So, just one. -Yeah. -Don't put on your registry. But it really comes down to the nipple size. -Uh-huh. -And there are 2 types of materials. There's latex which is the yellow-colored, rubbery-looking one. And then, there's silicone which there are pros and cons to both. A lot of babies like the latex better because it's softer but, eventually, it will crack and break down. You just need to replace them often. The silicone doesn't break down and they do a much better job of not collapsing in the baby's mouth. But they're very hard and a lot of babies don't like to suck on them. There are different shapes of nipples as well. You have traditional nipples. And then, you have even orthodontic nipples which are flat and, supposedly, help the baby feed more naturally. They sort of lick the hole on the side. There are odd shapes, you know, some have long teats. Some have really short teats and, especially for breastfeeding babies, what I found really works is the bigger nipples so that they can squish that up against their face. It's really comforting for them and there are even nipples with a little, almost- it's the tiniest fit rough so that the baby's used to it because moms aren't smooth like silicone. -Just a little bit of texture. -Yes. -And so, each bottle is gonna come with an array of different nipples to try for that bottle. -Yeah. So, I would buy 1 bottle and a couple of different nipples. Again, it's a small investment, but well worth it rather than struggling for 3 months with a bottle your baby hates and then you think it's formula or you think it's colic and, really, it was just his bottle. -And you start with a slow-flow nipple. -Yes. The nipples are all flow based on your baby and your baby's appetite. Some newborns can handle a medium and you can basically tell if the baby's gagging. It's too much. If the baby is, you know, sucking and sucking and spending a lot of energy and the bottle isn't draining very quickly, it's probably time to move up to the next flow. -And they're usually like a number like one is slow-flow and or something- -Yes. It goes by age for some, number for some, color for some. -A different thing on the brand. -Yes, exactly. -All right. Now, how do you handle bottles safely and keep them clean? -Well, there is a lot of safety scares right now about plastic bottles. Right now, it's VPA that's everyone's trying to avoid. What you can do is follow some simple rules to make sure you're not exposing your child to any extra chemicals. And the number 1 is never heat a plastic bottle. -Okay. -Heat the milk but not the bottle. What I recommend is to put the milk in a microwave-safe coffee mug just for a couple of seconds, just to lukewarm. Stir it up to make sure the middle is nice and even temperature and then pour it into the baby bottle. -Or see if the baby will just take milk cooler. Maybe they'll like cool milk- -Yes. -And then you can get away without heating it at all. -If you can get your baby to like room temperature milk, it's the most- -Uh-huh. -It's the easiest to work with- -Right. -Because they don't- they're not used to the chill and they're not used to warm. -And you say to avoid bottle sterilizers. Why? -Yes. Well, actually, I just think it's a not-necessary item. -Okay. -It's one of those that moms run out for, but the idea of sterilizing bottles came about before tap water wasn't safe to drink as it is now. So, if you have a healthy baby and you have safe tap water at home, soapy water is just fine. It will clean them perfectly. The other thing to keep in mind is to throw away your bottles every couple of months if they start to discolor, crack or scratch because bacteria can hide in the scratches especially the nipples if they start to look worn or discolored. Toss them and get new ones. That's the safest thing- -The safest. -To do for your baby. -And this is a cool little extra gadget that you brought. Can you explain what you do with these? -Yes. There are tons of great feeding accessories. -Uh-huh. -And the most common one is the formula keeper or the snack keepers. This is the new product by Innobaby and what I love about it is its 5 compartments that can be used separately. You can use just one, snap it off or you can use all 5 and the lid will go on all of them, but it can be used for formula or snacks or pacifiers. So, and it's really slim. It fits right in your diaper bag. So, I actually put an extra pacifier in there so it doesn't get crumbs on it and some cheerios and some formula. So, yeah, that's a great new product. -All right. This is a drying rack and a bottle brush. -Yes. -Can we put bottles in the dishwasher as well? -You can. Yes. The big thing is not to heat the bottle. Microwave can melt the bottle and change the consistency of a bottle. A dishwasher is safer and, if your child is sick, you might wanna actually go one step further sterilizing bottles and all that you need to do is either dishwasher and sterilize or you can get a pot of boiling water and dip them for like a minute. It removes the germs. -Great advice. -Yes. -Thank you, Heather. If you'd like to learn more, go to babygizmo.com and also The Baby Gizmo Buying Guide is in stores now. Thanks for watching Parents TV, your source for the best information for your growing family. -Thank you for watching Parents TV, our families, our lives.