Mother breastfeeding baby

No.1 The Best Breast Pump

The question I hear often is “which is the best breast pump?” Now that’s a very good question but also a very tricky one.
The best regarding what exactly? As not one mother and her body and milk supply are the same, there’s not one breast pump that is the best for all.
The question will most probably need to be more specific, such as which breast pump has the most suction power or which breast pump fits large breasts?
One mum’s best breast pump might not be your best breast pump.

Things to consider when choosing a breast pump:

Why? The reason for needing a breast pump
If you are unsure, please see your health care provider or lactation consultant to obtain information and advice on whether or not you will require a breast pump.
In some cases, even though you intent to be with your baby at all times and feed on demand, sometimes things come up that you may be required to be away from your baby. In which case you may need a breast pump for this reason so you can continue to provide your baby with breast milk.

Frequency – how often will you be expressing and using your breast pump e.g. regular pumping or occasional pumping?
The frequency of pumping plays a large role in choosing the best breast pump for you and your needs. Will you be pumping regularly, occasionally, for short-term or long-term, or perhaps you might need to exclusively pump due to special circumstance.

Manual breast pumps are cost effective and great for occasional pumping. They tend to have fewer parts, are convenient and portable. However, not ideal for regular pumping as they are labour intensive and take longer to express the milk.

Electric breast pumps are better suited for regular pumping, although not all electric breast pumps are built the same and some standard motor breast pumps are only suitable for occasional pumping. If you are required or intent to regularly express, you will need to consider for high performance electric breast pumps that are designed to be used on regular basis and for longer periods of time.

Location – Where will you be using your breast pump the most i.e. workplace or home?
If you are looking to specifically pump anywhere besides in the comfort of your own home i.e work, then noise level during operation mode might be something you want to consider, portability and ease of use.

Price and Quality
What is your budget? Some electric breast pumps are well into the hundreds but generally speaking, they are worth the money. However, the price doesn’t mean that that breast pump will be suitable for you and your individual needs.
In most cases price does reflect the quality but that doesn’t mean that the cheaper one won’t do the job.

Nipple and Breast size
Check that the breast pump you choose does have the breast shield size appropriate for your breasts or nipple size as this will ensure maximum comfort and effectiveness.

Electric or Manual
Electric breast pumps and manual breast pumps each have their own advantages and disadvantages. Taking other factors in to account will help you determine which type will be the best breast pump for you.

Suction strength
Generally speaking standard motor breast pumps will have less suction power than high performance electric pumps. If you intend to occasionally pump and have sensitive breasts then manual or standard motor pumps might be an option.

Size of breast pump unit
Electric breast pumps, especially high performance ones tend to be larger than the standard motor models and less convenient to carry around with you.
If you have a busy life style and tend to always be on the go, then something that is lightweight and can easily fit in to your bag might be the way to go.

Do your research and ensure that the breast pump you choose are safe and free from toxic materials such as BPA.

Product Support and Spare Parts
Not all breast pumps are equal so make sure you choose one that can offer you product support if you need it, warranties etc. Make sure that spare parts are easy to get your hands on. The last thing you want is to have something stop working and you’re not able to get spare parts to replace it with. That pump will become useless and you end up wasted your money.

In conclusion
Determine your needs and do your research. Prioritise which features and aspect that are most important to you and choose the one that ticks those boxes.

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