A breast pump is one of the essential items in the shopping list after delivery, especially for working and schooling mums. But choosing the right one can be a daunting task because you don’t want to waste money on something that doesn’t satisfy your needs. Stay at home mums may not need breast pumps but working mums will have to invest in automatic breast pumps so that they can express milk while in office. Buying the wrong breast pump can affect milk supply or even hurt your delicate nipples.
Here are some of the things to consider when choosing the right automatic breast pump.
If you will need to carry your breast pump to work, then you need to invest in an electric or battery powered pump that allows you to pump both breasts at once. This will increase milk production and reduces the pumping time by half.
How much are you willing to spend on the pump? Will you rent one from the hospital or will you buy it. Buying a cheap brand equates to a less effective and poor quality motor which may not last. Cheap brands can be slow in pumping, uncomfortable and even painful. This will lower the amount of milk expressed. Whatever the case never borrow a breast pump because it can carry bacteria or even viruses like HIV.
A good breast pump should have a closed system whereby the motor doesn’t meet with the collection kit. This will keep away the outside air which can contaminate the breast milk. In open system breast pumps, milk from the tubes can get into the motor causing molds to grow hence contaminating the motor which is not easy to clean. This is risky to the health of the baby. Check if the parts can be removed for cleaning and check the cleaning methods that are allowed for your brand because incorrect cleaning methods can damage the pump.
The breast pump should allow you to adjust the degree of suction and speed to a level that you are comfortable with and give you the maximum level of milk production. The breast shields should be the right size (not too small or too big). If you wear the wrong breast shield size, pumping can be painful, slower and less milk expression. For double breast pumping, ensure that both breasts have breast shields on.
- Easy to use and transport
The breast pump should be easy to assemble and clean. It should enable you to remove those parts that come into contact with milk and your skin to be thoroughly cleaned. If you will be taking it to work, then it should be portable and noise free. Good models come with carrying bags with insulated sections for storing expressed milk.
- Check the accessories
To make pumping easier and less stressful, you need to acquire a breast pump that comes with adequate accessories. It should have; some breast shields, a car adapter that you can use to pump milk while in the car, built-in batteries that can allow you to use the pump without a power outlet and good bottles.
The pump’s motor will determine the durability of the breast pump. If you are going to use it frequently then choose one with a very strong motor. Always buy original, good quality products with warranty support.
- Product support and warranties
The breast pump should have a warranty so that in case of any malfunction, you can return it for repair or replacement within a short time.
- Availability of spare parts
The brand you choose should have available spare parts in case some parts get damaged, they can be replaced easily.