Tuesday, May 12, 2009

How do you do it in your household?

Otaku de ha dou shite imasu?

During Golden Week, my brother's family of four visited my parents at their house and stayed pretty much the entire duration of the holiday. They have a 4 year-old boy and an 8 month-old boy, the most beautiful, robust, happy baby boy you've ever seen (second only to the Pumpkin Prince, of course :P).

While they were there, they did laundry a few times. My brother and his wife wanted to use baby detergent. I don't know if they have this in the Americas and in Europe. It's a special detergent just for babies, made from milder ingredients and devoid of bleaches and brighteners. Parenting magazines in Japan tell you to use this exclusively for babies, at least until they are a few months old. They also tell you to do the baby's laundry as a different load from the rest of the family. I did this for the Pumpkin Princess until she was about six months old. For the Pumpkin Prince, I toss everything except the poopy stuff in the laundry with everything else. Have any of my fellow mommies heard of "separate laundry and separate detergent" for babies?

Another thing the Japanese parenting magazines (and health care providers) tell you to do is to sterilize the baby bottles and nipples by steaming them or boiling them in hot water. Again, I did this for the Pumpkin Princess's bottles and breast pump parts until she was six months old (and continued with the breast pump parts for the duration of their use). For the Pumpkin Prince, they just get tossed in the top rack of the dishwasher with the rice bowls and coffee cups. How many of my fellow mommies sterilized the baby bottles and nipples? How did (do) you do things in your household?


Kalamity K said...

I used a different detergent, not specially for babies, but recommended for baby-laundry, with 'Marseille' soap. It's not really recommended in Belgium, but with The Special K's being preemie babies who spent the first weeks of their lifes in a IC unit, I was extra careful. That was: for the first few weeks. Then I just washed everything in the same machine, with the same soap.
As for sterilising bottles: here it is recommended to do so, until your baby is 4 months old, the time he starts to eat veggies. I was very happy when I could stop sterilising: 14 bottles a day was A LOT OF WORK! I hear from friends with second and third babies that they stop sterilising a lot sooner the second or third time around.

Annie Cat said...

I use a different detergent, but only because we use cloth diapers (and for that you need a detergent that won't build up on the cloth) and I do the rest of the baby laundry with the diapers, separate from my laundry.

I sterilized the bottles and pacifiers for the first use but since then have just washed by hand in VERY hot water. Pacifiers usually just get rinsed off in between uses and then washed once a week.

We're not very germ-conscious in our household. Let them build up their immunity from the start!

sheri said...

In America the most common detergent they recommend for baby clothes is called Dreft. I used it for a while for both kids. I also had a stove-top bottle sterilzer that I used for a while for both kids. At this point I couldn't tell you how long I used Dreft or how long I sterilized bottles. I do know that I was more lax with the second kid, though!

coppercorn said...

The funny thing about Dreft here is that it's scented! I used All Free and Clear (or the Costco equivalent) for the entire family. Only washed diapers separately; everything else together. Used the dishwasher to clean bottles and breast pump parts.

If I hadn't been nursing I might have been a little more careful at first, but I knew they were all getting getting good immunity.

Livy said...

There's no such thing as detergent for baby's clothes here, cos people don't really pay attention about it. But there are some mild detergent (usually in liquid form, not powder) for delicate fabrics that we use for washing baby's clothes.

About the baby bottles, silicon transparent nipples, and sterilizer, we use the Philips-AVENT brand.
The nipples are disposed after being used for about 3 months (sometimes less than that). When they started to become a bit yellowish, it's time to toss them to the bin.
The sterilizer is so easy to use. It could hold up to 6 bottles and nipples inside. Click the button and wait for 6 minutes, and you're done. Contents are sterile for up to 6 hours if unopened.

We use the bottles, nipples and sterilizer since the baby was born up till today. As long as he's still drinks the milk from the bottle. We'll train him to have his milk from a cute mug when he's 3-year old.

Never use any pacifiers for my son.