A Useful Tool for Nursing, Working Mothers…
There are a lot of reasons why nursing mothers may want to express their milk. One of the main advantages of expressing breast milk is that your baby can actually benefit from your milk even when you are not present. Working mothers and mothers who need to strike a balance between household chores and taking care of a newborn can definitely benefit from expressing breast milk, as there are instances when breastfeeding can become rather tiring and unmanageable.
The good thing is that mothers nowadays have a choice. Breast pumps have been created to help nursing mothers who need to be away from their babies. A simple electric breast pump can make everything easy for working mothers.
What is a Breast Pump and How Can It Help Nursing Mothers?
A breast pump allows nursing mothers to pump as well as store breast milk that the baby can enjoy even when they are not around. This device can make sure babies of working mothers are able to enjoy the benefits of breast milk even when their mothers are not around. Continuous pumping can also help nursing mothers from having engorged, painful and heavy breasts.
Choosing an Electric Breast Pump versus Manual Breast Pump
There are two types of breast pump, electric and manual. A lot of mothers prefer electric breast pumps over manual pumps, as they offer a lot of benefits to nursing mothers. Compared to manual pump, an electric breast pump can express breast milk quickly. Moreover, this type of pump is easy to use and more efficient in terms of function and performance.
For nursing mothers who want to express breast milk often because they are working or they are feeding twins, an electric breast pump is the perfect choice. With this type of pump, you are able to extract more breast milk in less time. You can cut the pumping time in half compared to manual breast pumps. Depending on the model, more advanced electric breast pumps come with different features. For instance, there are advanced electric pumps that are designed with double pumping function, which would allow nursing mothers to pump breast milk on both breasts at once. Other pumps are designed with suction mechanism that mimic a baby’s sucking pattern. Additional features are also available like adjustable suction levels and high number of sucks per minutes.
Unlike a manual breast pump, once an electric breast pump is put on your breast, the pumping action is automatically started and pumping breast milk is performed at a pace that you prefer. With an electric pump, you are saved from having aching hands and you are free from the hassle of ensuring difficult to maintain pumping patterns. This requires less effort compared to using manual pumps and offers faster means of expressing breast milk. This type of pump offers more flexibility compared to manual breast pump.
The downside, however, of an electric breast pump is that this is not as portable as a manual pump. Moreover, there are times when the pump is noisy when functioning. In using this type of pump, it may be hard to express breast milk discreetly or quietly. Another downside of an electric pump is the price, as this is more expensive compared to manual pumps. This pump is trickier to sterilize as well and is dependent on electrical source for it to work.
What Breast Pump Features to Check and Consider?
Electric breast pumps come with various features. Depending on your needs and preferences, you can choose electric pumps with various features. A good choice may include the following features:
- Adjustable Vacuum Feature. An adjustable vacuum is a great feature to look for in an electric breast pump. With this feature, you are able to adjust the vacuum capacity of the pump, so you are able to express breast milk in comfort.
- The Right Sucking Power. You should consider the sucking power of the pump. This is typically measured by the sucking cycles per minute.
- Double Pumping Feature. If you want to cut the pumping time by half, you may want to purchase an electric breast pump that has a double pumping. In addition, this feature can boost milk production, as this can empty both breasts at the same time.
- Easy to Clean, Use and Assemble. You should consider purchasing a pump that is easy to clean, use and assemble.
- Easy to Store. It is a good idea to look for a pump that comes with case, so you can easily store it and carry around. Moreover, you can look for a pump that is lightweight and compact.
How Often Should You Use a Breast Pump?
A breast pump can actually be used several times a day, depending on the nursing mother’s preference. However, if the mother does not latch the baby, the milk supply will start to reduce, as direct breast-feeding is still considered more effective compared to using a breast pump. The pump is not as effective as the sucking reflex of the baby. Experts recommend that you take a break from using a pump and space the usage throughout the day to make sure effective pumping is achieved.
What Are the Limitations of Using a Breast Pump?
There are several limitations associated with using a breast pump like physical, emotional, and physiological limitations. While it may seem that breast pumps can solve all problems related to breastfeeding, you may not be able to utilize it in certain places. Using a breast pump also has emotional limitations. While they may provide nutrition for your baby, a pump cannot act as a substitute for the mother. This cannot replace the mother and baby bonding that direct breastfeeding offers. In addition, using a breast pump has physiological limitations. Excessive use of a pump can actually interfere with milk production, as this is not as effective as the sucking mechanism that a baby performs.