If you are going to become a mother or are a new mother, you might be aware of the importance of breastfeeding your baby. There are so many ways in which you can benefit both you and your baby with the help of breastfeeding and it is indeed the most wonderful way to bond with your baby and give him or her the best nutrition. If you are confused between manual vs electric breast pump, this post is going to be your savior!
Assuming that you know why breast milk is the best for your baby, it is time to discuss about breast pumps. Moms who cannot feed their baby directly on some occasions like when they are working or they are not available at home with the baby usually pump milk to help their babies get breast milk even in their absence. Working moms or moms with babies who cannot latch properly are usually the ones who pump regularly to feed the baby. Direct feeding is definitely the best but pumped milk also contains as much nutrition as fresh milk and if you want to continue your breastfeeding journey even after resuming work, pumping is the way to go.
As a mom who was determined to give breast milk to her baby for at least two years, I researched a lot before buying a breast pump when I had to start regular pumping. I already had a manual breast pump that I got before delivery just in case the baby finds it hard to latch after birth. Now I have purchased the Medela single electric pump as I have to pump regularly to build my breast milk stash.
Manual Vs. Electric breast pump – which is better?
Both these pumps have their own pros and cons but the simple difference is that electric pumps are great for regular pumping moms and manual pumps are good for occasional pumping needs. Till the time I was at home and had not resumed work, I used the manual pump to express milk whenever I had to go out for a couple of hours. Here are the main differences between manual and electric breast pumps:
So these are the main differences and advantages of both kinds of breast pumps. You can read electric breast pump reviews online to get more idea about how these pumps work and help you get your breastfeeding stash ready.
Do I need an electric breast pump?
Yes, you definitely need it if you are going to pump regularly as electric pump saves a lot of time and energy as compared to manual pumps. They pump as much quantity in half the time and are quite convenient to use. Depending on your need, you can go for a single electric breast pump or double electric breast pump. Exclusively pumping moms usually go for double pumps so that can pump from both breasts together. I normally pump thrice a day along with direct feeding so a single electric pump works for me. You can check the reviews of electric breast pumps online to get an idea of how an electric pump works. Manual pumps are much easier to operate in case you are wondering how do manual breast pumps work.
Now that you have a fair idea of how breast pumps work and which type of breast pump you should go for, here are a few manual and electric pumps that are known for their performance and efficiency:
Philips Avent Manual Breast Pump:
One of the most popular manual breasts pumps available in the market is the Philips Avent pump. It is the best manual breast pump if you are looking for a convenient and compact pump for occasional pumping needs. The massaging cushion provided with the pump stimulates the breast efficiently to start milk flow. The pump is compatible with all Philips Avent bottles and comes at a very attractive price.
Medela Harmony Breast Pump:
Designed with a 2-phase expression technology, the Medela Harmony pump mimics the natural feeding pattern of the baby and expresses more milk in lesser time. The pump comes with a shorter handle and a longer handle that can be used for stimulation and expression respectively. Two Medela bottles and a bottle stand are included with the pump along with one valve and two membranes. The price of this pump is similar to that of Philips Avent manual pump.
Philips AVENT Double Electric Comfort Breast Pump:
If you want to go for a double electric pump, the Philips Avent double electric comfort breast pump is a great option to consider as it comes with three speed settings and has a closed system which prevents milk from touching the tubing. This breast pump is good for regular pumping and comes with two bottles, a travel bag, two soft-flow nipples, and breast pads pack. The pump is backed by a warranty of two years. The price is comparable to other double electric breast pumps.
Medela Pump in Style Advanced Breast Pump:
One of the best double electric breast pumps in the market, the Medela Pump in Style Advanced breast pump is the go-to pump for many pumping mommas. It comes with a tote bag of its own which includes double pumping kit, four bottles, cooler bag, ice packs, voltage adapter, battery pack, flanges, connectors, valves, and membranes. The Medela breast pump is also designed using the 2-phase expression technology and has a great suction power. The price is definitely on the higher side but it is available at a great discount online. You can refer the Medela website if you want to know how to use Medela breast pump.
Spectra Baby S1 Plus Premier Rechargeable Electric Breast Pump:
The Spectra S1 rechargeable double electric pump can be called one of the preferred breast pumps in the mom world as it is designed by nurses and lactation consultants that know how important breastfeeding is for the baby and expressed milk is the next best option to direct feeding. The pump comes with a fully adjustable suction mechanism which gives the mother full control over the expression process. The pump comes with 2 Spectra bottle with nipples and a cable to charge the batteries of the pump. The pump is expensive though but it is very efficient in pumping more milk.
Apart from these pumps, Lansinoh pump and Trumom electric breast pump are also good as far as the efficiency is concerned. All these pumps are used by moms worldwide and are the go-to machines for quick and clean expression of milk. Here are some basic FAQs that are most commonly asked by new moms who are venturing into the pumping world:
Q. Which is the best manual breast pump?
The best manual breast pump overall is the Philips Avent manual breast pump which is affordable as well as convenient to use for all occasional pumping needs. The massaging cushion it comes with is not available with any other breast pump and the wide-necked natural bottle included with the pump helps to avoid nipple confusion. It is also the best manual breast pump in India.
Q. Are there some disadvantages of electric breast pump?
While electric breast pumps are known for their efficiency and convenience, there can be a few drawbacks which include sore nipples and tissue damage if the right pump parts are not used and the pump is used more often than required. Some other disadvantages of electric breast pump include fast letdown, engorgement, and pain if you do not pump with the right technique. You have to make an informed choice reading the manual vs electric breast pump section above.
Q. How to store breast milk?
I have written a detailed post on some of the must-have essentials for new moms which has a portion on how to store breast milk. Maintain hygiene and use clean equipment while storing breastmilk to prolong its life. Keep rotating the stash to use the oldest milk first and pump regularly to maintain your supply.
Q. When to start expressing milk?
It is advised to refrain from pumping until six weeks as it can hamper your supply and lead to oversupply. Wait till your supply establishes and then start pumping to create your stash if you are planning to build a milk stash for your baby. Also, check the pump flange size and find the right size for your nipple in order to avoid soreness and excessive pull. Check our manual vs electric breast pump
Q. What should be the breastfeeding and pumping schedule for working mom?
The schedule of each mother differs as per their situation as some of them are exclusively pumping while some combine pumping with direct feeding but is it advisable to pump at regular timings to create a schedule and not skip any pumping sessions. Most moms including me pump 3-4 times a day with each pumping session being of 20-30 minutes. I am also a working mom so I pump in the morning, at lunchtime, and again in the evening or night.
So this was all about breast pumps and which pump you should go for depending on your usage. Now that you know all about manual vs electric breast pump, make an informed decision which can help you achieve your breastfeeding goal!