We all agree that the greatest miracle of life is birth, right? If you are excitedly waiting for your baby, it is almost time for you to experience this miracle. If you hold your baby in your arms, it means you will witness another miracle. Yes, breast milk is actually a miracle for a mother to feed her baby with her own milk!
Whether you’re breastfeeding your baby without any problems or are experiencing some breastfeeding problems, your postpartum best friend will undoubtedly be a good breast pump!
That’s why we’ve reviewed and evaluated many different types of breast pumps on the market and have prepared the following guide to help you choose the one that’s right for you.
Do you need a breast pump?
Whether you’re breastfeeding a lot or your baby doesn’t want to suckle, you’ll definitely need a milk machine after birth! However, the frequency of use; Depending on your lifestyle, the amount of milk and your baby’s appetite, you will decide.
First of all, we need to point out that a breast pump that is right for your friend may not be right for you. His lifestyle, the amount of breast milk and the suction power of your baby are different, your needs are different. That’s why you should choose the most suitable pump for yourself by examining the types of breast pumps and the factors that will affect the purchase decision.
What are the types of breast pumps?
manual breast pump
- It works by hand.
- It helps you express one breast at a time.
- It is slightly more affordable, smaller and lighter than electric ones.
- However, the milking process can take a little longer and your hands may get tired.
- However, you can prefer it for short trips, if you are going to work, as you can easily carry it in your bag.
electric milk pump
- Operates on electricity or batteries.
- We recommend that those who milk 3 or more times a week prefer electric. It divides itself into two.
1- Single milking electric milking machine: These are the pumps that help you to express one breast at a time.
2- Electric milking machine with double milking: These are pumps where you can milk one breast or both breasts at once if you wish. They are extremely efficient pumps. Expressing both breasts at the same time saves you a lot of time. By looking at these features, you can decide whether the breast pump should be manual or electric.
Apart from the pumps we have described here, there are also hospital type pumps. The suction power of the hospital type milking machine is much higher. We especially recommend it to mothers who have to stay away from their babies, mothers of premature babies or mothers of infants who cannot breastfeed. The prices of these pumps can shake your budget; so you can consider the rental option.
6 features to consider when choosing a milking pump
1- Perfect fit edges: One of the most important features of a breast pump is its fit to the breast. The full fit of the plastic edges not only provides more efficient milking, but also prevents the possibility of pain, bleeding and even infection due to the rubbing of the nipple against the pump. Many brands have chest attachments in different sizes. It is very important to choose the one that suits you.
2- Progressive milking feature: Progressive milking is actually available in many brands. We recommend purchasing a pump with a minimum of two-stage milking capability. The first stage is the warning stage. The warning phase is a brief and frequent warning phase. The second stage is the slow and intense vacuuming stage.
3- Operating sound: During operation, a pumping sound is naturally produced in manual pumps. Electric and battery powered ones work a little louder. You may need to milk quietly while your baby is asleep or at work. That’s why we recommend choosing those that offer quiet and vibration-free operation.
4- How it works: We now know that there are manual and electric/battery operated breast pumps. Some electric pumps can be converted to a manual hand pump with the help of a manual kit. Some manual pumps can also be converted to electric pumps with the help of a combi kit instead of a manual device. This means that the one type of pump you actually buy includes the features of both types of breast pumps, which may affect your choice. In the meantime, let’s also mention that there are pumps that can use PC, laptop, powerbank, car cigarette lighter socket and USB as power source. Now we all live with this technology. Therefore, the availability of these methods that can provide ease of use may be effective in the selection.
5- Indication: Not in manual pumps; however, LED and LCD indicators in electric pumps are available in many brands. These indicators allow you to easily see in which mode and at which shooting power you are milking. In this way, you can find the most suitable mode and shooting power for you, and you can even memorize it if the pump has a memory feature.
6- Material: It is important that the pump parts that come into contact with breast milk do not contain BPA and BPS.
8 milking machine accessories that will make your life easier
When making your choice, we recommend that you examine the accessories offered by breast pump brands and models.
1- Carrying bag: Although it may not seem very important at first, the carrying bag in which you can carry the pump and store your breast milk will be very useful.
2- Neck strap: Some brands produce neck straps and belts as accessories to provide freedom of movement for breastfeeding mothers. Expressing milk requires a very special concentration for most mothers. In fact, it is stated by experts that expressing milk in a calm and quiet room in a peaceful way increases breast milk productivity. So while we don’t recommend expressing while doing other work, it may be necessary in some situations.
3- Chest shield cover: Here is an accessory that we think is extremely necessary in terms of hygiene, the chest shield cover! Because wherever you go, you can close the shield cover and put it in its special bag and have no worries about the cleanliness of the pump.
4- Milk storage accessories: After milking, you will need milk storage containers for storage purposes. In some brands, the milking container can be turned directly into a bottle and a milk storage container. This offers the convenience of feeding your baby without the need for another container. The fact that you can put the container you are milking directly in the freezer or the refrigerator gives you great comfort.
5- Cooler bag: If you need to stay away from your baby during the day, it will be very useful to have a cooler bag with you. Cooler bags are large enough to hold an average of 3 to 8 cups of breast milk together. We recommend that you buy an appropriately sized cooler bag according to the amount of breast milk your baby needs during the day. You should also research how long this cooler can keep breast milk at the desired temperature.
It is also worth mentioning that: Although some brands include some of the accessories we have explained in detail above in the pump package, you may have to pay extra for some brands. Therefore, you should learn in detail which accessories are included in the product price and which are not.
8- Spare parts: Some parts of the breast pump are protected from excessive use, boiling for sterilization, etc. It may be deformed due to various reasons. That’s why you should research very well whether spare parts are available.
The milking machine is special for you!
- Breast pumps are personalized just like toothbrushes. For safety and hygiene reasons, you should not share or borrow.
- Breast milk is a biological substance. It is possible to pass on viruses such as HIV and CMV to someone else without knowing it. Especially if the nipple is cracked, blood may come into contact with the outside of the pump when expressing breast milk. Even if washed, bacteria and viruses can be transmitted. If you’re going to buy a second-hand breast pump or prefer to borrow one from a friend, we recommend that you at least buy a new breast pump.
- In addition, the motor life of electric breast pumps is not very long. If used for a single child, the engine life is usually 1 year. Although the warranty period varies by manufacturer and model, if you milk 3 times a day for 1 year on average, the engine power will decrease at the end of the year. You also need to consider this when borrowing or buying.