Sterilize pacifiers and bottles, when and how to do it


  • 1 When you need to sterilize pacifiers and bottles 
  • 2 Until sterilize pacifiers and bottles 
  • 3 What are the methods for sterilizing pacifiers and bottles 
  • 4 Sterilize baby bottles by boiling
  • 5 Electric sterilizer for pacifiers and bottles
  • 6 Sterilize the baby bottles in the microwave
  • 7 Cold sterilization 
  • 8 Sterilize in the dishwasher 

Germs and bacteria, stay away! When a newborn arrives, the fear of contamination is always lurking and it is thought that the little ones must live in maximum hygiene. Very true, but without too much stress. If on the one hand, contact with various types of germs can be really dangerous, on the other hand it helps the immune system to strengthen itself and to learn to hunt down these "enemies". Obviously, however, we must not put the health of our children at risk and here are the rules and methods for sterilizing their pacifiers and bottles.

The sterilization of everyday objects is very important, even if it doesn't have to turn into an obsession. Babies who are bottle-fed or who have the habit of a pacifier must always have them cleaned and disinfected and now let's see what are the methods to do this and how to proceed correctly to ensure proper hygiene.

When you need to sterilize pacifiers and bottles 

Do the accessories we use for the newborn need to be sterilized every time they are used or not? In general, there is not a single product in every home, but every mother has some in stock. To save time and energy, you can therefore wait to dirty some of them and then sterilize everything together. Doing it at every feeding would be a considerable stress and you can easily do without it. For example, you can sterilize everything that gets soiled in the evening, so you have everything ready for the next day.

Until sterilize pacifiers and bottles 

Here the opinions are different. If the baby is bottle-fed, pediatricians typically recommend sterilization for at least the first 6 months of life. Others, on the other hand, recommend it for the entire first year: after 12 months, the immune system of children is stronger and therefore it is also possible not to sterilize the objects they use.

What are the methods for sterilizing pacifiers and bottles 

There are several ways to sterilize baby products. You can use water, electric sterilizers, microwave oven, cold system or dishwasher. Let's see them in detail.

Sterilize baby bottles by boiling

It is the classic "grandmother's remedy" which consists in boiling baby bottles and pacifiers in a pot of boiling water with the lid closed for about twenty minutes. They must be completely covered by water and, at the end of the operation, they must be left to drip without touching them with your hands. The bottles must be reassembled after washing your hands well and the teat must be turned towards the inside of the bottle. The advantage is that it costs practically nothing and there is no need to purchase any particular items.

Electric sterilizer for pacifiers and bottles

It is probably the most used sterilization system by mothers. Electric sterilizers are appliances, usually with several compartments, in which to place the objects to be cleaned. Plugged into a power socket, they do everything by themselves in about half an hour, even if the times may be different depending on the product (HERE you can find one as an example). 

The electric sterilizer exploits the power of steam: a small amount of water is placed at the base, which is heated, releasing steam, which is highly sanitizing. There are many variations on the market: the functions are roughly the same, what changes are above all the dimensions.

Microwave baby bottles

Also in this case sterilization takes place thanks to steam. Compared to electric ones, these products are smaller because they have to be placed inside the home microwave oven. Take a look at this model HERE to get an idea. An advantage is certainly that of speed: ten minutes are enough to sterilize pacifiers and bottles. 

Warning: before sterilizing, the oven must be thoroughly cleaned, even if the sterilizer is closed. If you don't want to buy a sterilizer, there are also bags on the market that can be used in the microwave to sterilize the baby's items. They fit inside the bag, which must be closed and placed in the oven. Each bag can be used multiple times.

Cold sterilization 

This system to sterilize bottles and pacifiers involves the use of sanitizing products, which are dissolved in the water in which pacifiers and bottles are then immersed. These are tablets (such as those for the dishwasher) or liquids and are absolutely harmless for the child, also because they leave no trace. Sometimes they come already with a container that you can use to sterilize what you need. Before immersing them, pacifiers and bottles must be passed under running water carefully and then left to soak for about half an hour. 

They should not be rinsed and can therefore remain in the container until use. The advantageous aspect is certainly the practicality of use: no special tools are required. However, the sanitizing solution can be a bit expensive and needs to be changed every 24 hours.

Sterilize in the dishwasher 

Some appliances (especially the more modern ones) are equipped with special programs to sterilize baby products. And does your appliance have it?

text updated on 7 October 2022

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