Your lifestyle is ultimately the deciding factor when it comes to choosing which breast pump is best for you. Are you a stay-at-home mom, or a working mom? How much time will you have to pump? How much money are you willing to spend? The answers to all of these questions will help you determine which breast pump is best for you. So, which of the following describes you best.
Which Breast Pump Is Best?
Stay-at-home moms do have the advantage when it comes to breastfeeding. They are almost never apart from their little ones, and if the baby is nursing well there may be no need for a breast pump at all. However, if you’re a stay-at-home-mom like me, there are times when you just need to get away, maybe for some good stress-relieving exercise or a relaxing lunch with friends.
Regardless of the reason, limited short-term separations may be necessary. If this is the case, you may be wondering which breast pump is best for you, or if a manual breast pump would be enough. Manual breast pumps are great for moms that need to pump only occasionally, either to relieve engorgement or because they’d like to have any extra bottle available for emergency situations.
Manual breast pumps are lightweight and easy to use, plus they’re extremely affordable. They also make great travel companions if you’re planning a long road trip and frequent nursing stops are not in the game plan.
A full-time working mom is at the opposite end of the spectrum. Instead of having limited short-term separations, she has frequent long-term separations. If this sounds familiar, you may be wondering which breast pump is best? The only plausible breast pump would be a double electric breast pump capable of withstanding frequent use, like say 4 to 8 pumping sessions a day.
The best double electric breast pumps are obviously easy to use but are also easy to clean. Frequent pumping sessions mean frequent cleaning, so in other words, you’ll have to disinfect all the parts after each use. Some double electric breast pumps allow you to purchase extra sets of collection kits, including all the parts that need to be cleaned, therefore you can cut your cleaning frequency in half.
Double electric breast pumps, especially top brands like Medela and Ameda, offer high-performance motors that are capable of producing enough CPM’s (cycles per minute) that will effectively mimic your baby’s natural nursing rhythm, and therefore allow you to pump more milk in less time. Let’s face it, a full-time working mom does not have the time to sit down for a 45-minute pumping session, which is what you could expect with a single electric breast pump.
Double electric breast pumps are capable of emptying both breasts within 15 to 20 minutes, half the time that it would take to use a single electric breast pump or a manual breast pump. So, if your time is limited and you’ll need to pump frequently, a double electric breast pump is best for you.
A part-time working mom may not be away from baby quite as much as a full-time working mom, but she’ll still need to pump at least 2 to 3 times a day. If this situation sounds familiar, you might be wondering which breast pump is best? A good quality single electric breast pump would suffice in this situation. However, this is where you need to be careful. Some single electric breast pumps will not be effective enough to empty your breasts, therefore I would recommend keeping a close eye on the CPM range (cycles per minute).
A cycle is one suction and release, and a nursing baby typically sucks and releases 45 to 55 times a minute. Therefore in order for a breast pump to be effective, it must offer a CPM range that includes those numbers, 45 to 55.
The Medela Swing Breast Pump offers two phases, the stimulation phase, and the expression phase. During the stimulation phase this single electric breast pump will run at about 120 CPM’s to stimulate the breasts, and then slow down to 45 to 72 CPM’s during the expression phase.
Now, keep in mind that if you plan on using a single electric breast pump you will have to pump one breast at a time, and it can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 45 minutes to fully empty one’s breasts. A double electric breast pump can cut that time in half, so even if you are only working part-time, the amount of time you have to pump may be limited, therefore a double electric breast pump may be more suitable.
There are lots of choices when it comes to deciding which breast pump is best for you. Check out this best-selling list for more options.