Symptoms Of Baby Drinking Spoiled Formula

Are you wondering if your baby’s formula is still fresh? Well, here in this article, are some of the symptoms of baby drinking spoiled formula, and the various ways to keep baby from drinking spoiled and old formula.

Every parent, especially first time parents, are scared of their babies drinking spoiled formulas. Every mother always thinks about this.

Parenting is a risky job, we make mistakes at one point or the other. One of these mistakes is giving a child a spoiled formula. And then panic and anxiety sets in, especially for first time mothers.

Well, not knowing the aftermath of drinking spoiled formula is frustrating. But you don’t have to fear because this situation is not as bad as it seems.


What Is Spoiled Baby’s Formula?

So, before we go on, let us establish what a spoiled baby formula is.

There are 2 main types of spoiled formula. There is one that is prepared for later use, this type is kept in the refrigerator or kept at room temperature.

While the other one is the remnant your baby takes.

1. Baby’s formula prepared for later use is usually done for convenience, maybe for a road trip or night feeding and this type of formula can only last for 2 hours after preparation at room temperature.

It can stay for up to 24 hours if you put it in a refrigerator and after the stated time frames have expired, it is best to discard the formula.

2. The second one is the remnant of the formula your baby drank. Some parents, especially new ones unknowingly keep this till the next time their baby is hungry, but this is wrong.

Remnant formula should be discarded 30 minutes after the time of feeding. This is because remnant formulas are prone to microbes like viruses and bacteria because the baby’s saliva has mixed with the formula while sucking.

Usually, a baby’s formula that has been left at room temperature for more than 2 hours is an old or spoiled formula and should be discarded. [Also Read: What Happens When Baby Drinks Spoiled Breast Milk]

Also, spoiled formulas are expired baby powder or liquid formula that was prepared correctly and given to your baby within the right time frame.

It may look economical to give your baby expired formula because formula milk is expensive and you may not like throwing food away but this is risky.

Always check the expiry date on the pack before buying the formula and it is advised to use powdered formula within a month of opening it.

Also Read: What Happens & What to Do When Baby Drinks Dish Soap


Symptoms Of Baby Drinking Spoiled Formula

When babies ingest spoiled formulas, they can show one or more of these symptoms. These signs and symptoms are attempts by the body to expel the spoiled formula from the body. Here are various symptoms of baby drinking spoiled formula;

1. High fever

Fever is an attempt by the body to fight an infection. When any microbe or foreign substance enters the body, the immune system increases the temperature of the body to fight that pathogen.

2. Stomach pain

Spoiled formula can cause stomach pain in babies which do not subside even after they poop.

3. Vomiting

Another sign that your baby ate spoiled formula is frequent vomiting. Anything your baby takes, he/she vomits.

4. Diarrhea

Watery poop and frequent stooling is a sign that your baby has eaten contaminated food or drank a contaminated liquid.

Always look out for these symptoms and more as they will you avoid your baby drinking spoiled formula, or discontinue if you have mistakenly fed your baby a spoiled formula.


How Long Is Prepared Baby Formula Good?

Prepared baby formula is good for only two hours from the time of preparation. After this time range, the formula is no more safe to feed your baby with.

The best and safest time to give your baby formula is immediately after preparation.

After an hour of preparation, bacteria begin to grow in the formula and the food will become more dangerous for your baby. After 2 hours of preparation, the formula should be discarded even if it has not been touched.


How Long Is Baby Formula Good After It Is Mixed?

Prepared baby formula is only good for 2 hours after it has been mixed at room temperature. However, it can stay for 24 hours in the refrigerator.

After this time frame has elapsed, you should discard them because they are now spoiled or old formulas.

Also Read: When Can Your Baby Start Eating Solid Food


How Long Is Baby Formula Good After The Baby Starts Drinking?

If your baby drinks a formula and it remains, that formula is only good for 30 minutes. If your baby doesn’t return to it after 30 minutes, it should be discarded.


Can You Re-heat Or Re-warm Baby Formula?

If your baby did not drink out of the bottle of baby’s formula you made, you can reheat it only once before giving it to your baby.

Don’t use a microwave because it doesn’t warm food evenly. This will create different temperature variation throughout your baby’s formula and this will favor the growth of bacteria.

But if you prepare a bottle of formula and your baby drinks out of it and it is remaining, you shouldn’t reheat it or give it to your baby again. It should be discarded.


Does Powdered Baby Formula Go Bad?

Yes! Powdered baby formula can go bad. It goes bad after a month of opening the container and it also has an expiry date.


How Long Does Powdered Baby Formula Last?

You have to read the pack of the powdered formula to check for the expiry date. It is the expiry date that will tell you how long the powdered formula you are about to purchase can last.

Then when you buy it, make sure you use it within one month of opening it.


Can You Use Baby Formula After The Expiration Date?

No! Any baby’s formula that has expired is not safe. It is an old or expired formula and should be thrown away.

How Long Is Powdered Formula Good After Opening?

Powdered formula is only good for one month after opening it. After one month, you should discard the remaining one.


How To Tell If Powdered Formula Has Gone Bad?

To determine if your baby’s formula is fresh or old, you have to use your 5 senses. Some of the signs of spoilage a spoilt formula has are:

  • It has a thicker consistency than a fresh formula. A baby’s formula that has sat for a long while or even for a few hours, especially in hot weather will get curdled. You will even see the water separated from the milk.


  • If you tried the above and the formula looks fine, you can go on to smell it. But keep in mind that most baby formulas don’t have a great smell. But you can still detect spoiled formulas because the spoilt ones smell rotten and sour. Do you know how cow milk smells when it goes bad? Yes, that acidic kind of smell is what we are talking about.


  • But if the baby’s formula looks fine and also smells fine, there is still another way to detect spoiled formula. It is very common to be confused at this state but the way to find out is to taste it. Many mothers don’t like tasting it but it is safer to check all the possibilities. So taste the formula, if it has an odd taste, you discard it.


  • Another way to tell if your baby’s formula is spoiled is to notice what happens during preparation. If you are struggling to mix the milk properly because the milk has started separating, you may be using an expired formula and you need to discard it.


  • Always observe your baby after feeding him/her. If your baby normally feels fine after feeding but suddenly starts getting sick and experiencing diarrhea after feeding, you may be giving your baby spoiled formula.

It is hard to go wrong with the above steps. You can always detect spoilt formulas using these tips.

Also Read: How to Stop Unwanted Behaviors In Children


What To Do With Expired Baby Formula?

The best and safest thing to do with expired baby formula is to throw them away. Trying to be economical will only create problems that will consume more money.

Can Babies Get Sick From Drinking Old Formula?

Yes, your baby can get sick from drinking old formula. Babies are not like adults who can eat or drink a lot of unhealthy things and rarely get sick.

Babies don’t yet have well-developed immune and digestive systems, even their organs of detoxification are not yet matured, so old formula can affect them easily.

Also, all babies are different. Some babies are born prematurely, others have health problems, some have a weak immune system, etc. so every baby will have a different reaction to spoiled baby formula.

Some babies may not show any radical physical symptoms after drinking old formula while some may start vomiting at once but it doesn’t exceed this state. Their system will calm down after some time.

However, there are some babies, especially those with already established health problems or weak immune systems who will show life-threatening signs and symptoms after drinking spoiled formula.

So how your baby will react to spoiled formula depends on these factors stated but one fact remains, and it is that old formula can make babies sick.


What To Do If Baby Drinks Old Formula

If you mistakenly give your baby old formula, watch his/her reaction first before you know the next step to take. Healthy babies will just spit or poop out the spoiled formula without having any serious symptoms.

However, if your baby shows any of the symptoms mentioned above, you need to see a doctor immediately and monitor your baby closely. Keep him/her hydrated and the symptoms will subside in a day or two.

You can also give them rehydration liquid and remember to stay calm.

However, if you notice any of the following symptoms, you should consult a doctor immediately:

  • If the symptoms mentioned above do not subside after 2 days and the condition is getting worse.
  • Your baby becomes lethargic and don’t respond correctly.
  • The eyes are sunken.
  • Your baby doesn’t shed tears when crying, dehydration is the worst consequence of vomiting and diarrhea.
  • Your baby urination has reduced.


How To Keep Baby From Drinking Old Formula

1. Label your baby’s feeding bottles in advance for night feedings, day feeding, and remember to add the preparation time and the expiry time.

2. Throw old or spoiled formula away. You may be tempted to save remnant baby food until the last minute but this can lead to mistakes of someone or even you giving your baby an expired formula. It is best to discard it when your baby is done eating.

3. Prepare your baby’s food with care. Sterilize your baby’s feeding bottles, use filtered water or boiled water. Stick to the formula to water ratio. The counter you use in preparing and storing your baby’s food should be clean and disinfected.

4. Always make it a deliberate choice to feed your baby fresh formula. So, try and make a new bottle for your baby whenever it is possible. If you are short of time, a way to prepare the formula quickly instead of doing it ahead of time is to put water in the bottle in advance and make portions of the formula scoops.

5. If you must store the formula in advance due to time and other factors, then you have to store your baby’s formula appropriately. Put the formula in the refrigerator and it shouldn’t be close to eggs, meat, fish, and other foods that can contaminate the formula. Also remember to cover the bottle very well and even label it clearly.

6. Another way to avoid the mistake of giving your baby spoiled formula is to use ready-to-drink formulas. But these are expensive but the cost is nothing compared to that of treating symptoms of baby drinking spoiled formula.

Read Also: Signs your Baby Is a Manipulative Child



Many people believe that parenting is one of the hardest jobs in the world. This is because you can never know it all as a parent. You are growing and learning every day.

You will also make a lot of mistakes and blunders while raising your baby. And one of those mistakes is giving your baby a spoiled formula and that is why we put together this post to help you avoid this mistake as much as possible.