Which Pump is Right for Me?
You’re getting ready to enter a whole new world of motherhood, and all the decisions that go along with it can be enough to make your head spin. If you’re like most first time moms, you’ve probably never had a reason to research breast pumps before, and all the different options may be a bit overwhelming. We’ve summarized the different types of pumps and their pros and cons to help you find which breast pump is right for you.
Some breast pumps are best for moms who plan to be with their babies around the clock and don’t expect to do much bottle-feeding. Others are ideal for moms who know that they’ll be returning to work after their babies are born and are committed to continue breastfeeding. Whatever your circumstances may be, there’s a breast pump that can make it easier and more convenient for you to collect breastmilk for your baby. Here’s what you should know about each type of pump:
Double electric breast pumps
A double electric breast pump is one of the most versatile and common types of pump available. This type of pump is compact yet powerful, allowing you to collect milk from one or both breasts comfortably and efficiently. It’s portable, too so you could use it at home, at work, or when you’re traveling.
If you expect to pump regularly throughout the day, a double electric breast pump would be the best fit for you. Using it when you’re away from your baby will help you maintain your milk supply, and you may be able to get one for free through your health insurance company.
There are a lot of choices out there. So what should you look for in a double electric pump? Adjustability: Babies feed differently, and a good pump will allow you adjust the settings for comfort and to get the most milk possible. Comfort: Let’s be honest – pumping probably won’t ever become your favorite part of the day but finding a pump that’s comfortable can make a huge difference. Lansinoh’s ComfortFit® flanges have soft, flexible rims designed to gently hug your curves. Lastly, think about how you’ll use your pump. If you’ll be pumping in close quarters with your co-workers, you may want to find a pump that’s quiet. If you plan to pump frequently, you might want to find a pump with a connected app to automatically track your sessions.
Manual breast pumps
Manual pumps work a little differently than double electric pumps. While the suction power of a manual pump is similar to a double electric pump, instead of being powered by electricity or batteries, you squeeze the handle to create suction. Manual pumps are adjustable, as well. To change the suction level, just squeeze more or less on the handle. Some manual pumps, like the Lansinoh Manual Pump, even allow you to adjust between let-down mode and expression mode. It’s also completely silent.
A manual pump is a little less efficient than a double electric pump, though, because it’s designed to pump only one breast at a time. It can be great for occasional pumping or for use as a backup. It’s also great for use on the go. It’s the perfect size to stash in your bag or glove compartment, so you always have a pump on hand. You never know when you might run a little behind schedule, and breastmilk waits for no one!
Breastmilk collector or silicone breast pump
A newer type of pump is a bulb-shaped pump made of silicone. Sometimes called a silicone breast pump or a breastmilk collector, it’s a great tool to easily collect extra breastmilk and build up a stash for when you’re away from baby.
When breastfeeding, most moms release milk from both breasts, even if their babies are only feeding at one breast at a time. When this happens, a breastmilk collector, or low-suction silicone breast pump, can help you save every drop for your baby.
How does it work? A Breastmilk Collector or silicone pump uses light suction, allowing you to collect breastmilk from one side hands-free while your baby feeds on the other side. You breastfeed as you normally would and attach the breastmilk collector to the opposite breast. The breastmilk collector will create gentle suction to help extract milk while you focus on bonding with your baby. Bonus: It’s perfectly silent and completely hands-free.
Although some manufacturers call these breast pumps, it's important to know that a silicone pump can’t replace a manual or electric pump to help maintain your milk supply when you’re away from your baby. But it is a super-convenient tool to help you save every last drop of breastmilk.
It’s true, there’s a lot to learn when it comes to motherhood but choosing the right breast pump can make your breastfeeding experience much easier.