Choosing the Breast Pump That’s Right for You

Choosing a breast pump can be a big challenge for new or expectant parents. There are so many options available it can be a daunting task!

478293521-BreastPumpFirst and foremost, consider ‘what is the purpose of the pump’? Many times the actual circumstances surrounding the breastfeeding process will dictate the type of pump you need to get the best results – such as baby’s age, economics, if you’re pumping to establish an initial milk supply or augmenting a supply if you are away from baby.  Another consideration is how long you would like to pump.

Many breast pumps come with a lot of accessories and extra parts, which may not ever be used. Conversely, having multiple options for different occasions might be just the ticket for some mothers. There are four levels of pumps that are generally recognized.

1. Battery operated – These can typically can pump one breast at a time. They are not always efficient but can meet some mother’s needs and are usually an economical option.

2. Manual – This type can be a little ‘labor intensive’ and again, may meet the requirements if you are only needing to use it  occasionally and your baby is breastfeeding well.

3. Small electronic – These are currently the most popular since many insurance companies are providing this type for their clients, which can be used to double-pump (both breasts at once).They can be very efficient under some circumstances. Affordability is often a concern.

4. Hospital Grade – This option is proven to be the most reliable and efficient in evidenced-based research studies. These pumps are generally provided to mothers who are working to establish and then maintain their milk supply when full-time breastfeeding has not yet been initiated. They are most often used in Neonatal ICU settings, or recommended for home use. […]

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