Today’s medical professionals have deemed breastfeeding as the golden standard for providing babies with everything they need to thrive. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has recommended that breastfeeding be the only source of nutrition for the first six months, with a continuance of this feeding helping to nourish your little one even more.
Why is Breastfeeding so Good for Baby?
Studies have shown that fancy formulas are no match for the perfect symphony of nutrients in a mother’s milk. Breast milk helps to promote proper brain growth, boost vision development, provide antibodies to fight off illness, and set the stage for healthy digestive development. No manufactured formula can deliver what babies need quite like what their mother provides. Many professionals refer to mother’s milk as the perfect recipe for infant growth.
If you’re on the fence about breastfeeding, then be sure to keep in mind that formula costs can add up! Many new parents are surprised to find themselves paying between $150 and $200 per month for their hungry infant!
Do You Need a Breast Pump?
Unless you plan on being by your baby’s side 24/7, a portable breast pump may be the way to go for mothers who choose to breastfeed. Whether you’re a professional who plans on returning to work soon, you have plans that keep you out of the house, or there’s a medical reason why you or your little one cannot breastfeed, it’s important to find the right medical device for the job.
Which Type of Breast Pump Should You Choose?
To begin, it can help to narrow down what you’re looking for in a breast pump. Does it need to be mobile for on-the-go use, or do you require a double pump to boost your letdown? A breast pump is an investment, so be sure to choose wisely!
- Manual breast pumps — Simple, affordable, and effective, these models rely on the use of both hands to manually pump milk. If you don’t plan on pumping often, then this may be the right choice. Keep in mind that you must do all of the work!
- Powered breast pumps — Electric breast pumps are powered by a wall outlet or battery pack to provide comfortable extraction without the need for extra effort.
- Hands-free pumps — One way to extract milk while you’re out and about is to go with a wearable pump. While more costly than many models, these pumps are lightweight and discreet.
- Double breast pumps — Double your output with two breast shields and a pump with the features needed to extract more milk in less time.
- Hospital-grade pumps — Those who will pump frequently can rely on these heavy-duty breast pumps. You can elect to rent or buy one of these pumps to meet your needs.
Which Features Will You Need?
Beyond choosing the type and style of your new breast pump, you will also need to consider the features of each model to ensure you purchase one that thoroughly meets your needs. Breast pump manufacturers provide a wealth of information to help you find the right fit for your situation, and may be able to help you decide which pump is best.
Below are a few of the top features offered by the most popular breast pump models. Remember to check out the additional accessories that are available for many breast pumps.
Your breast pump will simulate the motion of a feeding infant in order to facilitate optimal milk extraction. The first phase of this process is stimulation, in which the baby will suckle aggressively to let the mother’s body know it is time for feeding. Once the milk begins to flow, your infant will begin to pull in slow, smooth draws. This release of milk is called letdown, a reflex that is stimulated by an infant’s suckling motions. Your chosen breast pump will either offer a letdown button or dial for multiphase pumping.
Most breast pumps will feature a letdown button to enable you to toggle pump speeds. This is useful when you need to re-initiate letdown, such as when your baby needs a break or you need to pause between bottle fillings.
The power source of a breast pump greatly influences how you can use it in the months to come. Many mothers rely on powered personal breast pumps to feed their little one, which typically includes a plug and wall outlet for consistent energy. If you plan on being out and about often, or your work does not provide a suitable space for nursing or pumping, then you will likely need to find a model with a built-in battery pack. Some models feature rechargeable batteries, while others rely on traditional AA batteries. In either case, it pays to consider your lifestyle needs when choosing between an electric and battery-powered breast pump!
Unless you opt for the hospital-grade breast pumps, you will likely receive a handy carrying case for your pump and all of its accessories. Each microfiber case is built to fit the unique form of the model it carries, and offers total protection while your pump is not in use. We recommend learning more about the breast pump case included in your order before making the final decision!
You’ll want to keep your pumping supplies neat and orderly, which is why it may help to opt for built-in bottle holders. These holders provide the perfect storage for your bottles while also keeping them secure to help prevent spills.
While looking for a quality breast pump, you’ve likely encountered ‘open system’ and ‘closed system’ options. A closed system relies on a milk barrier to provide space between your expressed milk and the breast pump itself. The main concern for mothers while they pump is that their milk will overflow into the pump mechanisms, causing trouble. This may also lead to milk contamination. An open system, on the other hand, does not provide a milk barrier.
Before you stress about this feature, it’s important to keep in mind that the chances of contamination are very low. Additionally, closed systems will require the same level of maintenance to keep clean, as bacterial growth is possible in both breast pump types.
Portable breast pumps are made to be small and lightweight. 10 pounds may not sound like a lot, but when you’re tasked with carrying your breast pump everywhere, this weight can certainly add up! Before you buy, be sure to decide the weight level that will work best for your lifestyle.
It’s important to understand a breast pump’s warranty information before making a purchase. Most products will feature a one-year warranty to cover the motor and an extended warranty for issues with parts and accessories.
Each breast pump set includes a breast shield or flange designed to fit most users. However, if you notice that the size of your breast shield is incorrect, it is important to seek out the proper fit. Flanges that are too large can suck in excess breast tissue, pinching the milk ducts and impacting flow for feeding. Breast flanges that are too small can hurt the nipple and may even lead to an infection.
Our Breast Pump Guide
Lehan Medical Supplies & Equipment is here to serve as your trusted source for durable medical equipment in Rockford or Freeport. We understand how hard it can be to find the right breast pump for your needs, and our team can work with you step-by-step to ensure you are happy with the results. All of the breast pumps carried by Lehan’s are BPA-free and applicable for most major insurances.
Elvie Double Breast Pump
This pump is a silent, light-weight, hands-free, rechargeable, and on-the-go experience. It fits directly into your bra and you can go about your day while you pump discretely. It has a free app that connects to your smart phone (apple or android) so you have all the knowledge of your pumping experience at your fingertips. The pump has advanced knowledge and will automatically switch from Stimulation to Expression mode when it detects let down, it also stops when it senses the bottle is full. This pump provides mothers the unique experience to pump anytime, anywhere with little to no hassle.
Lansinoh Smartpump Double Electric Breast Pump
The Lansinoh Smartpump Double Electric Breast Pump provides moms with the resources they need to track and monitor their pumping schedule, nursing schedule and more with a Bluetooth connection. The Smartpump app combines the data in a graph that can be printed in PDF form to send to your baby’s doctor. In addition, the app records baby’s growth, longevity of pumping sessions and even diaper changes to ensure that your baby is healthy.
The closed system design reduces the number of parts you have to clean after each session and prevents any milk from entering the tubing.The innovative two-phase technology works to mimic baby’s natural feeding patterns with a two-minute rapid release followed by a letdown phase to ensure mom is extracting as much milk as possible. This is one of the only pumps that offers three pumping styles and eight adjustable suction levels for moms to customize each pumping session to their liking. The LCD screen displays the exact cycle and suction level that mom is on so she can adjust to her comfort level easily and quickly.
Medela Advanced Starter Kit
This pump is a double electric pump with a single speed/suction knob that allows YOU to control the speed and suction of your pumping experience, it also has a easy push let-down button to switch from stimulation to expression if you start before the 2 minute automatic switchover. This pump helps to produce more milk in less time.
This rechargeable, lightweight, double electric breast pump is perfect for an on the go mom. It has adjustable speed and vacuum combination and a easy push let-down button to switch from stimulation to expression if you start before the 2 minute automatic switch over. It also has a pumping timer to track your pumping sessions along with a digital black light display to make late night pumping easy. This pump has a memory for you to save your favorite pumping patterns.
This pump is a smart, rechargeable, double electric pump that is the quietest pump Medela makes. It has 2 phase digital cycling with stimulation and expression phase, it also has a easy push let-down button to switch from stimulation to expression if you start before the 2 minute automatic switchover. There are 2 different pumping rhythm choices for you to select what’s most comfortable. It also can connect with MyMedela app (iphone or android) so you can see your real time tracking of pumping sessions.
This quiet, lightweight, rechargeable single or double breast pump has 10 expression levels for a customized experience for each new mom, along with 2 expression modes. Pumping sessions/modes can be saved in the memory setting to provide easy and quick pumping sessions based on previous sessions. The pump has a 2.5 hour battery life, a 30 minute automatic shut off, and a digital black light display to make late night pumping sessions easier.
This quiet, rechargeable pump can be used as a single or double electric pump. It has 2 phase cycling with a let down button to provide more customization on pumping sessions. There is a massage mode that helps stimulate letdown and then it goes into expressions mode, all modes have adjustable suctions. It has a timer to track pumping sessions along with a nightlight to make late night feedings easier. It has a more powerful battery than the S9 to provide a stronger suction but provides the portability that the S2 pump can’t give.
This quiet pump can be used as a single or double electric pump. It has 2 phase cycling with a let down button to provide more customization on pumping sessions. There is a massage mode that helps stimulate letdown and then it goes into expressions mode, all modes have adjustable suctions. It has a more powerful battery than the S9 to provide a stronger suction.
This lightweight, rechargeable, portable double electric breast pump is a great choice for moms that are on the go. It has a 2 phase cycling and a let down button to provide more customization during pumping sessions. It can be plugged in or use the internal rechargeable battery. The battery has a 2-3 hour battery life and is perfect for pumping in between feeding sessions.
Our Safety Tips
It’s important to do your research and ensure that you have all of the guidance and support needed to take on this exciting new chapter in life. Advice such as “stay hydrated” or “keep calm” can do much to foster a positive bond between you and your baby during this wonderful stage. Beyond the advice associated with how to pump, you will also need to consider how to safely pump.
Before you begin your journey as a mobile mother, it can help to ask a few safety-related questions:
- How long does breast milk last in storage? It can help to remember how to store your expressed milk with the rule of six: six hours out at room temperature, five or six days in the refrigerator, and six months in the deep freezer (12 months is acceptable, if needed). Keep in mind that longer storage times will result in a breakdown of vitamin C within the milk.
- How should I store my breast milk? You can store your expressed milk in a clean, capped plastic (BPA-free) or glass container. Many mothers invest in disposable plastic bags designed for this purpose.
- Do I need to wash my breast pump? Yes! Bacterial growth can stem from pathogens coming into contact with your breast pump and milk. It’s recommended to thoroughly wash your pump at least once per day.
- Can I reuse someone else’s pump? It is not recommended to use someone else’s breast milk pump. Contamination can result from breast milk entering the tubing and components and setting the stage for bacterial growth. There’s no sure way to completely sterilize a breast pump, which is why professionals will always tell you to procure your own.
Need Help Finding a Breast Pump?
If you need a breast pump, a doctor should be able to provide a prescription. This can help you to find a high-quality, portable breast pump at low to little cost out of pocket. Lehan’s Medical Supplies & Equipment is here to serve as your trusted resource for premium breast pumps and accessories tailored to fit your lifestyle needs in coordination with your insurance benefits.
Contact Us Today!
Ready to get started? You can fill out our breast pump insurance form to get started through us, or contact us online with any questions. Lehan Drugs in Freeport and Rockford is here to enhance your life with the right durable medical equipment, and we’re confident that we can help you find the best breast pump for your needs. We look forward to helping you!
Have your prescription? Send it to us to get started!