Every new parent longs for five minutes to drink their mug of tea while it’s still warm. Instead, you only remember it hours after you’ve made it because you’ve been knee-high in nappy changes, feeds and baby sick. A good cup of tea can be ruined by limescale in your kettle and Good Housekeeping recommend that you should descale you kettle every four to six weeks to tackle limescale build up. But, as busy parent, who really has time for that?
However, if you’re bottle feeding your baby and are providing cooled boiled water, then it’s best to squeeze in a regular clean. Breastfeeding didn’t work out for us and I was horrified when I started making formula feeds up at the amount of limescale that made its way into her bottles. In addition to descaling the kettle, I purchased a tea strainer to filter out the nasty white stuff.
Hard water area
Living in Suffolk, our water is categorised as ‘extremely hard’. 60% of the UK has a hard water supply, including Essex, Kent, Norfolk, Hampshire and Somerset, to name a few. Hard water isn’t anything to worry about, and is caused from rain water picking up minerals. The more minerals collected, the harder the water. Thus, the more limescale you’ll find in your kettle, iron, in your toilet basin and around your shower head.
Is limescale anything to worry about?
Thankfully, consuming limescale is harmless, so if you’re baby swallows a little of it, there’s nothing to worry about. Larger pieces, however, may block up the teat of the bottle and make it difficult for your infant to swallow his or her’s milk or water. As a result, they could take in too much air which contributes to tummy aches and excess wind. So, although the substance is harmless, it’s best to tackle it before it creates a bigger problem, such as an unsettled baby.
Tackling lime scale
There are an array of descalers on the market which can be used to tackle limescale in your kettle. I used to use Oust and it always worked wonders. However, I was a little concerned by the warning triangle on the bottle. So, I looked for a more natural descaler and remembered my mum telling me she’d used bicarbonate of soda on her kettle. As I had a tub of the stuff in my baking cupboard, I thought I’d give it a try.
I didn’t leave it for anywhere near as long as I should have as I was keen to start scraping the nasty white stuff off. But, even in just five minutes a good half of the limescale was gone. Therefore, I know that next time I need to leave the bicarbonate of soda in the hot water for longer.
Although, not dangerous, limescale isn’t nice. And, allowing your baby to consume it isn’t the best start to a child’s a life. Therefore, taking measures to beat the scum will save you worrying and will make your kettle more energy efficient, too.