Frequently Asked Questions
Where can I find SMA® Nutrition products, if I can’t find any stock in my local area?
We know it’s upsetting when you can’t find the baby milk you need. We have increased the amount of baby milk we produce in our factories. We have also been working closely with retailers to make sure that we get our baby milk to individual stores as quickly as possible. If you are still struggling to find your usual baby milk here are some steps that could help.
- For LITTLE STEPS® and SMA® ADVANCED please use our store locator on our where to buy tool. This can be found on the individual product pages of the SMA® Nutrition website. Enter your postcode and it will show regular stockists near you. You should then call the retailer to check on stock availability, before travelling to the store. We will be adding this tool to SMA® PRO products very soon.
- We have worked closely with Amazon, who should have stock, so you can order the product you need direct to your door
- Contact your local pharmacy; they will be able to order baby milk in for you.
- Try an online pharmacy such as Chemist Direct – like Amazon they should have stock, so you can order the product you need direct to your door
- Phone the customer services of your local supermarket for stock information.
- Try independent stores which are often less heavily used
- Ask a friend or family member to keep an eye out for baby milk whilst they are doing their shop
- Are there alternative products I can use if I can’t get hold of my regular milk?
If I have to change to a different milk, will my baby settle ok, what should I expect?
Every baby is different and some babies may be slightly more unsettled, this is perfectly normal. A change in stool consistency/frequency can sometimes happen when infants are starting or switching formula, this is also perfectly normal. If you have any questions, contact your healthcare professional or the SMA Careline®.
What if my baby is on a specialist milk and I can’t get supplies?
On the first instance we would advise to speak to your local pharmacist, they should be able to order your specialist milk in for you. You could also try online pharmacies. If you are still struggling to find your specialist milk please contact our Careline. We are not able to send out product to you as we cannot take payments through our Careline but we may be able to help.
If I contact the Careline, can they send me my usual baby milk?
In the UK and Ireland, there are strict regulations on baby milks that all manufacturers adhere to. We comply with all regulations and as such, we are not allowed to send out any baby milk free of charge. At SMA® Nutrition everyone is working around the clock to keep up with the unprecedented increase in demand that we have seen over the last few weeks. And although our Careline is not able to sell you baby milk directly or advise you which shops have stock, you can always contact us and we will do our best to support you.
Is there anything I can do to protect my baby from catching coronavirus?
Naturally, this is a very stressful time for parents; however, there is a lot you can do to help protect you and your baby. The NHS and World Health Organisation (WHO) advise on the following steps:
- Wash your hands with soap and water regularly, for at least 20 seconds. Always make sure you have washed your hands before touching your baby. Use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available.
- Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue or your sleeve when you cough or sneeze. Put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands.
- Try to avoid using public transport unless absolutely necessary.
- Work from home if you can.
- Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth. Hands can pick up viruses from touching surfaces. So ensure you wash your hands regularly or use a hand sanitiser.
If I have the coronavirus, can I still breastfeed my baby?
The current guidance is to continue to breastfeed. There is currently no evidence that the virus can be carried in breast milk and given the well-recognised benefits of breastfeeding, you should continue to breastfeed if you feel well enough to do so. Guidance from the The Royal College of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists recommend the following precautions when breastfeeding:
- Wash your hands well with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before touching your baby, breast pump or bottles
- Try to avoid coughing or sneezing on your baby while feeding at the breast
- It is recommended by WHO that you wear a mask where possible when being close to your baby (including during feeding), but make sure you are aware of how to use and dispose of it safely.
- Follow recommendations for pump cleaning after each use
- Consider asking someone who is well to feed your expressed breast milk to your baby.
- If you do express milk make sure that you and the other person feeding your child both follow the same hand hygiene rules before and after handling any feeding equipment, or your child, and follow recommendations for proper pump and bottle cleaning after each use.
- I am pregnant are there specific precautions I should take to prevent catching the virus?
Can my unborn baby catch the virus from me?
At the moment there is not enough evidence to determine if the virus can be transmitted from a mother to her baby in pregnancy. Expert opinion is that your baby is unlikely to be exposed during pregnancy. It is also considered unlikely that if you have the virus it would harm your baby and no cases have been observed to date*. If you are concerned, contact your healthcare professional and follow the updates on this website.
- Should I still go to antenatal appointments?
I feed my baby with baby milk; can my baby be infected with the virus through the product?
We understand that in the current situation many parents will worry about risks of COVID-19 infection in their day-to-day lives. SMA® Nutrition always follow strict protocols on hygiene and cross infection control and ensure that all our baby milks are safe. During this worrying time we have of course reviewed all our protocols and introduced additional measures to ensure our baby milks are safe. Your baby is not at risk of becoming infected with COVID-19 from our baby milks. It is important to follow the same hygiene rules as women who are breastfeeding:
- Wash your hands well with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before you handle the formula or bottle and before you handle your baby
- Ensure you clean/ disinfect any possible contaminated surfaces regularly
- Try to avoid coughing or sneezing on your baby while feeding
- Wash and sterilise all utensils according to manufacturer's instructions
- If you are feeling too unwell to feed your baby, if possible, ask someone else to help you with the feeding duties making sure they still follow the same hygiene rules.
- If you have any of the symptoms of COVID-19 or suspect that you may have it, WHO recommends that you wear a mask, if available, when handling and feeding your baby.
Should I sterilise my bottle although the preparation instructions say it is not required?
We recommend washing and sterilising all utensils according to manufacturers’ instructions for all our First and Follow-on Milks. For Growing Up Milks we don’t usually specify to sterilise equipment but in these unprecedented times we recommend to continue to sterilise bowls, spoons and any other feeding utensils you would usually provide for your baby.
*Data from The Royal College of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists March 2020
The best way to feed a baby is to breastfeed, as breast milk provides the ideal balanced diet and protection against illness for your baby and also many non-nutritional benefits for both baby and mother. We recommend that you speak to your healthcare professional when deciding on your choice of feeding your baby. Professional guidance should also be sought on the preparation for and maintenance of breastfeeding. If you do choose to breastfeed, it's important to eat a healthy, balanced diet. Infant formula is intended to replace breast milk when mothers choose not to breastfeed or if for some reason they are unable to do so. A decision not to breastfeed, or to introduce partial bottle-feeding, will reduce the supply of breast milk. If for any reason you choose not to breastfeed, do remember that such a decision can be difficult to reverse. Using infant formula also has social and financial implications which must be considered. Infant formula should always be prepared, used and stored as instructed on the label, in order to avoid risks to a baby’s health.