Electric Breast Pumps

Electric breast pumps express milk quickly and can become a necessity when feeding your baby. Certain styles may be more suited to your requirements than other models. Depending on your lifestyle and pumping needs, there are several factors to consider.

How are electric versions different from manual versions?

Electric breast pump models can be battery operated, or they can be plugged directly into an electrical outlet. Most options come with a pumping unit that houses the controls.

Manual pumps require you to pump your breasts with your hands. They are smaller and lighter. In both cases, the milk is collected directly into a bottle.

What are some features of electric breast pumps?

There are several features to consider when choosing a pump model while nursing.

  • Double pumps: Double electric breast pumps have two suction cups allowing both breasts to be pumped simultaneously.
  • Suction settings: Some models offer suction patterns. This is intended to stimulate the flow of milk or replicate a more natural sucking rhythm.
  • Suction strength: Many models have controls that allow you to control the flow of milk, ranging from slow to fast.
  • Cycling time: This refers to the sucks per minute that the machine can make. Electric models are faster than manual models. Look at the cycling time of the device when purchasing it.
Which breast pump is right for you?

Several factors can affect how well a particular electrical pump brand or model works for you.

  • The frequency of pumping: Work, travel, your baby's needs, and other factors may dictate how often you need to pump. Will you only use the breast pump, or will it supplement breastfeeding? This may be a key factor when choosing a brand or model.
  • Location: Electric pumps are heavy and larger than manual models. If access to a power outlet is limited, be sure to choose a model with a battery backup.
  • Fit: Breast pumps come in different shapes and sizes, depending on your breast size. The breast-shields may vary by brand and model as well. Check the size, texture, and shape when looking at a specific style.
How do you clean the pump's parts?

Depending on brand and model, there are several ways to clean breast pump components. The instruction manual for each brand and model should specify the best way to wash the pump.

Cloth towels and sponges should be avoided when cleaning breast pumps. They often contain bacteria that may be harmful. Single-use paper towels are more sanitary. All parts should be thoroughly dry before reusing. Try to avoid touching the inside of parts that will contain breast milk. This will further reduce the chance of contamination. The electrical motor, batteries, or other electronic parts should not be washed with soap and water. They may need to be wiped down with a clean, soft cloth as needed. Dishwashing soap and hot water can clean most breast pump parts. Some breast pump parts may be dishwasher safe.