5 long years ago when our first child came kicking and screaming into this world, I didn’t know the first thing about breast pumps, but many of my friends and co-workers swore by them. Fast forward 5 years and I understand why. My breast pump is my savior, providing me with the freedom to leave the house or take a break whenever the need arises, without having to worry about bub going hungry.
My only regret is not doing more research before buying a pump, as there are so many different varieties out there. Finding the best breast pump for you will depend entirely on your personal situation and needs.
Why Do I Need A Breast Pump
The first thing to consider is why you’ll need a breast pump. If you plan on returning to work full time or even part time you’ll be pumping fairly frequently and would want to invest in a good pump that will do the job quickly and easily. For this I recommend you invest in a double electric breast pump as they can cut down greatly on the time needed to pump by a) pumping 2 breasts at once and b) expressing milk much faster than a manual breast pump.
If however, you just plan to use the pump occasionally when spending short periods of time away from your little one, a manual breast pump may be sufficient. A manual breast pump is generally operated by a hand pumping action as opposed to electric breast pumps that come with a console where you simply select the level of speed and suction you’re comfortable with.
How Long Do I Need To Use This For
The next thing to consider is how long you intend to use the pump. If you plan on using it over a long period of time, possibly even after a couple of new additions to the family then I highly recommend investing in a good quality pump with a durable motor. In this regard, Medela breast pumps stand out above the crowd. They’re the rolls Royce of breast pumps and are built to the highest standards. They’re generally a bit pricier than many of the other models, but as the old saying goes… you get what you pay for. I went through 2 lower quality breast pumps, one that simply didn’t produce enough suction to do the job, and another that broke down after 5 months of use, before discovering my trusty Medela Pump In Style. A great breast pump that’s been my constant companion ever since.
Safety For Breast Pump
In order to ensure your child’s safety, breast pumps require frequent cleaning and maintenance which means that you’ll want to make sure the pump you choose is easy to disassemble and wash. Many pumps use parts that can simply be taken apart and placed in a dishwasher, while others require hand washing which can be a nuisance, so check the instructions for washing before making your choice if convenience is important to you.
While on the subject of safety, one of the most important considerations is the type of plastics your pump is manufactured from. Anything that comes into contact with you baby or the baby’s milk needs to be safe, so be sure that the pump you select is free of BPA (A potentially harmful compound often used to produce plastics).
Another handy feature that many pumps offer is a let down function which is basically a setting that’s engaged in the first couple of minutes of pumping, and will help you achieve a natural milk flow. I haven’t found it to be a necessity as many electric pumps offer adjustable settings that will give you the same result, but it’s a nice addition all the same.
Hopefully the information above has given you a better understanding of the kind of breast pumps available, and a good starting point.
I’ve been using breast pumps for a long time and recently started a website dedicated to reviewing breast pumps and offering new moms advice on expressing milk. For more information please visit us at BreastPumpReviewSite.com