A convenient breast pump is a useful device that greatly facilitates a woman's life. The device makes it possible to feed the baby with expressed milk, allowing the mother to go about her business. It is indispensable in the care of a premature baby or in case of difficulties with breastfeeding. To choose a breast pump that will be your assistant, consider their main types and design features.
Two Most Convenient Breast Pump Types
The efficiency and price of the device is largely determined by its design features. All breast pumps according to the principle of operation are divided into 2 main groups: mechanical and electric. Each of them has its own characteristics, advantages, and disadvantages.
The principle of the operation of mechanical breast pumps is to create a vacuum around the nipple area by hand, thereby stimulating the release of milk. Devices are of two types:
Pump-action: Its structure is primitive - the device consists of a breast attachment and a pump or rubber bulb, by pressing which the woman creates pressure on the nipple. Some devices have a pumping cup - if this is not available, the breast pump is not suitable for collecting large volumes of milk.
The advantage of the pump version is the low cost. Of the minuses, one can note the formation of cracks in the nipples with frequent pumping, hand fatigue during the procedure, and low productivity.
Piston: The modern model of a mechanical breast pump consists of a breast funnel, a lever, and a bottle. By pressing the piston, the woman controls the intensity and pace of work. This type of breast pump pumps more gently and more efficiently than its pump version, but the cost of the device is higher. The disadvantages of the model are hand fatigue when decanting and rapid wear of the valve.
Electric Breast Pumps
A distinctive feature of an electric convenient breast pump is its operation from the mains or batteries. A woman does not need to make an effort to collect milk, since the vacuum is created by a motor. The main disadvantage of such a device is the price, but it is justified by all its advantages.
The breast pump is characterized by fast pumping, a gentle attitude to the breast, and the opportunity for a woman to go about her daily activities during the procedure.
Criteria of choice
There is no universal recommendation for purchasing a breast pump - it is a matter of individual comfort and preference. Breastfeeding experts advise when buying a device pay attention to the following parameters:
Manual or Electric Breast Pump
Mechanical-type breast pumps are suitable for irregular pumping - their frequent use leads to cracks and painful sensations. As a rule, such devices are advised to take to the hospital, to relieve congested breasts after childbirth. The electric convenient breast pump is suitable for mothers who plan frequent weaning - for work or school. The device greatly simplifies the collection of milk, making it quick and painless.
The silicone funnel is denser than the plastic one, fits the mammary gland, do not let the milk spill when pumping. Some manufacturers produce breast pumps with massage nozzles, but according to reviews, this design is not suitable for everyone.
It is more convenient to use the option with a slightly raised nozzle. While collecting milk, a woman cannot bend over, but sit with a straight back. Taking a comfortable position relaxes the nursing mother, making the procedure more comfortable.
Electric breast pumps produce monotonous sounds during operation. The intensity of the noise depends on the specific model - you should take this point into account when buying if pumping will take place next to the newborn's crib.
When choosing a mechanical breast pump, you should make sure that it can be easily disassembled and washed. This will allow you to quickly sterilize the device - usually, this possibility is written in the attached instructions. A relative disadvantage of the electric model is the impossibility of its complete sterilization, but only of the parts that are in direct contact with milk.
Biphasic Pumping Technology
Modern devices are single- and two-phase - the latter is more productive. The system repeats the sucking movements of the baby - first fast, stimulating the flow of milk, and then slowing. Thanks to the natural rhythm of pumping, the procedure is more efficient and transient.
Manual and electric breast pumps are devices that support a new mother and her baby in various situations: when there is too much or too little milk, when the baby needs to stay longer in the hospital, or when the mother has to leave the house.
In case of separation or feeding problems, it is worth keeping lactation, because mother's milk is the best food for the baby.
Before the birth of a child, it is worth buying a convenient breast pump and taking it with you to the hospital. It often happens that the breast does not produce enough milk after the first feeding, and milk production can be stimulated with a breast pump.
Very often, the baby, although he is born with a sucking reflex, "technically" does not cope with the correct capture of the breast and sucking on the nipple, so his actions are not very productive.
Meanwhile, it takes a lot of effort to "start" the flow of milk from the breast. Once this is achieved with a breast pump, your baby will find it much easier to breastfeed and will not interfere with this skill.
Manual or Electric Breast Pump: Which is convenient?
In most cases, a conventional manual breast pump is enough for the entire period of breastfeeding. But some women prefer to feel comfortable and use an electric breast pump. In both cases, it is useful to use a breast pump from time to time when there is a lactation crisis, or vice versa, an excess of milk.
It also happens that a mother has to express milk to leave the house without a child, for example, to visit a doctor.
You can expect lactation crises in the third and sixth week of a child's life, and then in the third and sixth month, although there is no iron rule here. In the vast majority of cases, this is a natural phenomenon that occurs as a result of an increase in the child's body weight and, as a result, an increase in the need for food.
Electric Breast Pumps are Safe for Mothers
After a few days, everything returns to normal, because the mother's breasts, thanks to appropriate stimulation, produce more milk. It is also worth taking care rest at this time so that the body can focus on producing more milk.
If you need to leave the house without your baby, you can express the right amount of food in advance and store it in the refrigerator. When the baby is hungry, the milk will need to be warmed up a little.
An electric breast pump usually has a bottle that you can use to feed your baby. You can also buy milk storage containers in the refrigerator or freezer that are suitable for a breast pump.
Can convenient breast pump is suitable for the child?
If the baby does not take the breast at all, then the best solution would be an electric breast pump, with which you can express milk from one or both breasts at the same time.
When choosing between a manual or electric breast pump, keep in mind that the larger the baby, the greater the need for food, which can lead to long pumping sessions and great impatience in the baby waiting for food. Of course, you cannot control this, but you can reduce the pumping time to a minimum with an electric breast pump.
Processing of the breast pump
When using a breast pump, the woman's daily duties include washing, drying, and (from time to time) sterilizing the breast pump and accessories. It is also necessary to pay attention to the manufacturer's instructions for specific equipment. This may be frustrating at first, but after a while, you will get used to this duty. And as the child grows older, spaying will become less frequent.
Wash your hands with warm water and soap before you start expressing milk. It is enough to wash the chest once a day with a regular toilet for the whole body.
After pumping, disassemble the pump according to the manufacturer's instructions. Wash only those parts that have been in contact with milk. Wash them thoroughly in warm water with detergent.
Pay special attention to the cleanliness of the valve and diaphragm. Then rinse everything thoroughly in running water and place in a bottle dryer or dry with a paper towel.
How often feeding utensils should be disinfected?
Pumping and feeding equipment should be disinfected:
- in the first month of a child's life - before each use
- on the 2nd month of a child's life - 1 time per day
- From the 3rd month of a child's life - 2-3 times a week.
The breast pump (more precisely, those parts that have been in contact with milk) can be disinfected in several ways:
Immerse the parts in boiling water at 90-100C for about 5 minutes (unless the instructions say otherwise). All parts must be below the surface of the water.
Parts from the convenient breast pump can be processed in a microwave oven in a special sterilization bag. Take out the bag and pour out the water carefully so as not to burn yourself. It is possible to use such bags many times, but always following the manufacturer's recommendations. This is a cheaper alternative to a sterilizer.
Note: Sterilization can be carried out in special electric sterilizers or microwave oven sterilizers. Undoubtedly, electric sterilizers are the most convenient and efficient, as they hold more bottles and feeding utensils.