Breast Pumping Guide
Some women prefer to breastfeed, others pump milk, and still others a combination of both. There are some things you should keep in mind when pumping milk, because it can be more difficult than you think, especially in the beginning.
Here we’ve picked out some common questions about pumping milk and answered them for you. Here’s the information you’ll need on selecting the best pump for you.
The Best Breast Pump
Medela’s new Pump in Style with MaxFlow technology is a double electric breast pump designed for moms who pump several times per day. Built with a closed system with overflow protection, redesigned connectors with large openings for easier cleaning, and intuitive push-button controls with 10 adjustable vacuum levels, Pump in Style is designed to make breastfeeding easier and more convenient, so you can feed your baby with breast milk for as long as you choose.
Breast-feeding and pumping: Tips & Advice
The most important facts in brief
- Pumping milk is a good alternative or supplement to breastfeeding to provide your child with breast milk. However, there are some things you should keep in mind when pumping and storing it so that your child does not suffer any damage.
- Breast pumps come in different varieties: electric or manual. Each has its advantages and disadvantages, which we will present to you so that you can find the right one for you.
- It can be challenging to stimulate the milk-giving reflex without a child. We will show you tips and tools you can use.
Best breast pump Review
Bumblebee Breast Pump Manual Breast Pump
BumbleBee breast milk pump is made by food grade silicone, which is able to bit by babies. Silicone material feel soft and will never hurt mothers’ nipple and skin. It is quite friendly to sore and swollen breast during the lactation period.
Medela Freestyle Flex Breast Pump
Medela’s Freestyle Flex Double Electric Breast Pump is designed to fit your active lifestyle: it’s light, compact size and rechargeable battery offer the flexibility to express wherever and whenever you like, with no compromise on pumping performance.
Lupantte Hands Free Pumping Bra
The pumping & nursing bra could hold the bottle firmly and securely while pumping. Allows moms to handle multi-tasks. Maximum comfort with perfect details & soft material, accompany you with soft & support.
Why should I pump milk?
Pumping milk has many advantages. Your child can be fed independently of you, should you not be there. This way, the father can be directly involved in this important process.
In addition, you can better control how much your child has already drunk and whether this is sufficient. If you are physically unable or decide not to breastfeed, this is an alternative to feed your child with breast milk.
We do not want to tempt you to decide for or against breastfeeding, but for many women the breastfeeding process is unbearable, and pumping milk is routine. In other countries, this is much more common than in Germany.
Of course, we can’t tell you whether one or the other is right, because, in the end, it’s only important that you feel comfortable and make the decision for yourself. So don’t let yourself be unsettled in your decision. We know very well that you will not always meet with understanding if you consciously decide against breastfeeding, but you know what is best for your child.
Guide to the Pumping of Breast Milk
How do I pump milk correctly?
You can express your breast milk using certain breast pumps. A distinction is made between manual and electric pumps. We show you here the advantages and disadvantages of each:
Faster, as can be used on both sides at the same time
Triggers milk donor reflex
Many settings for painless pumping
Quieter and more discreet
Exhausting with frequent use
Which one is right for you depends on your needs.
- When and how often should I pump milk?
The timing of pumping depends on you. The decisive factor is whether you are also breastfeeding your baby or feeding him exclusively with pumped milk. If you are breastfeeding, it is advisable to pump after or during breastfeeding, as the milk donor reflex is already activated.
If you pump exclusively, you can always pump after your meal, for example. It has been proven that women who pump more often produce more milk. A rough guideline is 8 times in 24 hours, but it also depends on how much you pump.
To stimulate the milk-giving reflex without irritating your baby, you can resort to various techniques and tools. Check out our tips on how to do this.
There is no perfect time to start pumping. Just make sure that you don’t bottle-feed your baby during the first few weeks, though. This can lead to sucking confusion, as the switch between breast and bottle is still too great in the beginning.
8 times pumping per hour is considered a guideline.
- Pneumatic post drivers use the force of the compressed air and wrap a post
By contrast, pneumatic post drivers make use of the power of the air. Basically the same way as their hand-operated counterparts, but instead of the operator lifting the post, the post is lifted by air pressure, whereupon the operator operates a button to break the air supply and push the full mass of the post towards the post. Pneumatic drivers are bulky but are able to carry great weight with a minimum of force, so that fast work is possible with usually rather a heavy hand job. However, as with all conventional pneumatic tools, it is necessary for having a big air pump on-site, which is big and impractical.
- When should I stop pumping milk?
There are certain factors that could alter your milk and harm your baby. Do not pump milk if:
- you have consumed alcohol 2 hours beforehand
- smoked cigarettes immediately before
- you have used drugs 3 days before
- you have a thrush infection
However, if you are mildly ill, you do not have to worry about infecting your child. There are hardly any contagious diseases spread through breast milk, except for thrush infection. In case of flu, cold or similar, you can pump your milk without worrying.
Alcohol, cigarettes, and drugs pass directly to your breast milk and your child consumes them.
We don’t want to judge consumption at this point and can imagine that sometimes you can’t do without it. We only want to inform you that the consumption is transferred to your baby and that sudden infant death is more frequent because of it.
How do I store the milk I have pumped?
When storing milk, there are a few things you need to keep in mind:
- At room temperature up to 77 °F (25 degrees Celsius) 4-6 hours.
- In the refrigerator up to 39.20 F (4 degrees Celsius) 3-4 days.
- In the freezer up to 3.2 F (-16 degrees Celsius) 6-8 mths.
If you want to thaw frozen milk, you can do it in the refrigerator or in lukewarm water, but not in boiling. Do not soak frozen milk again.
Also, make sure you have the right hygiene. There are certain containers with a BPA-free seal, which means that they do not contain bisphenol A, which could have an effect on the human hormone balance. Likewise, there are special breast milk bags, which are also still space-saving in the refrigerator.
Pumping milk: tips & advice
Pumping milk is not always so easy and especially needs a little practice. Do not despair if it does not work immediately. We want to help you with these tips and tricks and ensure problem-free pumping.
Create a pleasant atmosphere
We think that the most important thing when pumping milk is that you feel comfortable because then the likelihood that the pumping process will be pleasant and trouble-free is also the highest.
So make sure you are in an environment where you are not afraid to use your pump. Sometimes pumping has to be done between doors, but you’ll find you’ll like it better in a calm atmosphere.
If you are not breastfeeding and pumping at the same time, we recommend the alternating right and left pumping for 10 minutes at a time. If you pump hands-free, you can also read a book or do something else. Use this time for yourself.
Stimulate your natural reflexes
This is easier said than done, we are aware of that. It works best if you breastfeed your baby at the other breast at the same time because the reflex is already activated then. We want to give you a few tips here:
- Put a warm cloth on your breast
- Drink a lot: especially nursing tea
- Massage your breast
- Change the pump or the pumping rhythm between feedings
- Reduce the stress in your life
Work with the right tools
Besides the breast pump, you can use various other tools to make the pumping process more comfortable. There are special bras that allow you to pump hands-free. This reduces the strain on your shoulders, and you can do other things on the side.
There are also special tops that allow easy and discreet access to the breast, making it easier to pump in public or at work.
You can also resort to breastfeeding liners that catch leaking milk without wetting your clothes. The process of pumping can be just as painful as breastfeeding, so don’t be afraid to use nipple ointment or hats for protection.
There are also special massage pads you can use to activate your natural reflexes. These can be placed on the nipple like a cap and stimulate milk flow.
Before you start pumping, you can prepare yourself with special things. Besides massages etc. to stimulate your natural reflex, we recommend you to prepare your environment.
Prepare all the equipment you need for pumping. If you are going to pour the milk before refrigerating it, you can prepare the container and make room in the refrigerator. Also, prepare something to do when you pump without your baby.
Create a pumping schedule
It can be helpful if you create a pumping schedule for you and your baby by entering how much you have pumped and when. This way you can keep track of your pumping and don’t have to think about whether you have pumped enough today. The guideline is 8 times a day, but it depends more on your body and your child.
BREASTFEEDING ADVICE FOR NEW PARENTS – Video
FAQ - Breast-feeding and pumping
The first few days, before mom’s milk, comes in, hand expression is often the most effective way to express colostrum. Double pump for 10-15 minutes per session for additional stimulation. Once mom’s milk is in, pump for 30 minutes per session, or for 2-5 minutes after the last drops of milk.
It’s absolutely OK to pump your breast milk and give it to your baby in a bottle. Pumping is a great way to provide your child with your breast milk without putting them to the breast. Here’s what you need to know about pumping for your baby.
Perhaps one of the biggest myths lactation consultants hear around the use of a breast pump is this: Pumps cause breast stretch marks and sagging. Breastfeeding/pumping doesn’t cause breasts to sag. Pregnancies, weight loss of over 50 pounds, and cigarette smoking are associated with greater breast droop.
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