Importance of a Breast Pump

A breast pump is a device that is used to extract milk from a lactating mother’s breast. It comes in handy for mothers who are unable to breastfeed directly for various reasons. With a breast pump, a mother can store her breast milk in a container for the baby to use later.

There are various reasons as to why you need a breast pump. Such are:

  • Cleft lip – due to medical problems such as a cleft lip, a baby may have difficulties in latching. Therefore, pumping the milk to a special bottle designed for this condition will greatly enable the baby to feed well.
  • Tongue tied babies – there is a condition known as tongue-tie which makes it hard for the baby to breastfeed directly from the mother’s breast and so, pumping the milk becomes necessary.
  • Suckling problems – Newborns mostly take time to learn how to breastfeed and a pump comes in handy on such times.
  • Mastitis – Many cases of mastitis in breastfeeding women are thought to be caused by milk stasis. This occurs when the milk isn’t properly removed from your breast during breastfeeding. A breast pump assist to express milk thus relieving her from pain and extra milk.
  • Inverted nipples – the pump is useful and effectively express milk from flat or inverted nipples.
  • Breast engorgement – when a mother has too much milk that the baby cannot consume it all, the breast hold all the excess milk and leaves to soreness and possibly pain and in such cases she can express for later consumption by bottle.
  • Hospitalized / premature babies – a breast pump is crucial when a baby is in the hospital and the mother is not in a position to feed the baby herself .

Common Breast Pumps Available For Use

Breast pumps come in different styles, types and brands. 

  • Manual breast pumps – these can be operated by hand to create suction that will get milk from the breast.. They work in different ways but they always come with a manual, grow through that before use.
  • Battery enabled breast pump – this is a good option when you need to use the pump on the go where need be. They are easy to use, portable and small and will require batteries to function. They are a good alternative for electric breast pumps without access to electricity.
  • Electric breast pump – these are powerful and strong enough to efficiently give more milk depending on your supply in a shorter period. They save a lot of time to express milk and will require power source to get the job done.
  • Used breast pump – these can be used by multiple persons whereby the parts that contact the milk can be disposed and other parts sterilized.  You can rent this type of pump if you are not at a position to get yours and sterilize it for use to avoid infections and other ailments.

How Else Can One Express Breast Milk

Expressing breast milk depends on how much, how often and why you are doing it. 

Hand Expressing

Some mothers prefer to express milk by use of their hands. In this case, by gently squeezing the breast, you can encourage the milk to flow from the breast into a container.



#Please note that development differs from one child to another

# Content intended for educational purposes only, and should not be substituted for medical advice from your doctor.

# Be careful when using any products mentioned on this website. We hold no regulations for such products or their providers.

Last reviewed January 2019

Sources: firstcry, verywellfamily, nhs, nhs

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