How to Choose the Right Breast Pump

There are several breast pumps on the market today. Choosing the right one may be confusing. Some women know how to manually express breast milk by hand and may not need a breast pump. Although, a lot of women find it easier to use a breast pump for milk storage. Having a breast pump also helps working moms, especially if  you need to pump several times a day. If you are planning on staying home with your baby until after he is weened a simple manual pump may work fine. If you are planning on returning to work you might want to invest in an electric pump.

Make sure you talk to your doctor or lactation specialist before you go out and rent or purchase a breast pump.

Renting a pump is a great option for women who are plan on pumping for a short time. If you decide to rent a pump you can get a high quality one from a medical supply store, hospital or your local WIC program. If you rent you might have to purchase cups that fit your breasts, tubing and collection bottles. If you plan on nursing for longer you might want to compare rental prices with purchase prices. It may be in your best interest to purchase a pump instead.

If you are still concerned about the high cost of breast pumps consider this. It will cost more in the long run if you continually purchase formula for your baby. Also breast milk is better for your child‘s health.

Breast pumps that attach to both breasts at once are great because they cut your pumping time in half. You may also want to choose a pump with automatic cycling. This mimics your baby’s natural sucking rhythm as it draws milk out of your breasts. Other things to consider when choosing a breast pump:

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1. Find a pump with quick cycling times. The more often your pump cycles or “sucks” the less time it will take to empty your breasts and the more milk you will pump.

2. Look for a pump that lets you adjust the suction level. If you are unable to adjust the suction level the pump may be too weak or so strong that it hurts.

3. If you are going to take your pump to work find one that is lightweight and easily portable.

4. If you would like to purchase a manual pump avoid the kind with a rubber bulb at the end. These pumps can cause your milk to flow into the bulb. They are also hard to clean and can lead to bacterial growth.

Choosing the right breast pump is a very important decision for new breastfeeding moms. If you follow these tips the process will be easier and rewarding.

*This article first appeared on the Healthy Moms Magazine in 2009.

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  • Anjanette aka. MommaYoung , October 21, 2009

    Oh these are so helpful. It is very confusing. I didn't have very good ones at all with my babies and it was very frustrating.

    Thanks for sharing.

  • Twin Momma Kathleen , October 24, 2009

    Hey there! My favorite pump is by Hygeia, and I think electronic pumping is great…especially as the mother of tiwns. Also, I cheat and use a hands free bra…I realize this is a post about breast pumps, but since I discovered my hands free pumping bra (Easy Expression) I think the two items MUST be used together. The bustier allows you to pump completely hands free, and works with any electronic breast pump. It made pumping so much easier for me I have made it my personal mission to see no mom has to pump without it!
    Twin Momma Kathleen

  • ladyviral , October 27, 2009

    wow good tips.. I never knew there are pumps that can adjust its suction level… thank you :).

  • 2legcaco , November 6, 2009

    Anyone hear of the pumpstation? I love that place, they have all sorts of products and stand by them. They test everytihng so they only sell what they think is good. it helped me alot.


  • Holy , November 26, 2009

    Wow this was very much helpful.Thanks for sharing it. Thanks for this blog.


  • Abigael , November 26, 2009

    I’ve tried this Baby Diaper Spray from Pump Station… Its all natural and soothing, this 25% zinc oxide spray helps prevent skin irritation such as diaper rash. Its safe and extra gentle Baby Zinc Spray provides an enhanced barrier to help seal out the wetness and germs that cause chafing and irritation to the skin. The episencial aromatic oil blend includes thyme and tea tree for their naturally effective antimicrobial and antifungal properties. It's easy, no-touch spray application minimizes mess and is more comfortable for baby.… I love it! Try it! … I’ll have to try the other stuff from Pump Station! Cheer!


  • hands free pumping bra , January 19, 2010

    Thank you for your tips it is very helpful. Like me a first time mom would really appreciate this. I've already purchase one from Simple Wishes and want to learn more on how to use it better.

    Gathering more advices and tips would really be great! Thanks! 🙂

  • Simply Cintia , April 16, 2010

    VERY helpful! Too bad I found the article after I bought a pump. I think it will still work for me if not, I'll follow your awesome advice. Thank you!

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