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39 weeks, when to buy a pump, and other recommendations (brands, bottles)?

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

Hi, first baby due any day now. I bought a nursing pillow that I like.....but the pump, bottles, etc are things I have put off....since I am hoping to not pump much or use bottles much (I have heard that it's best for baby to get used to sucking on the breast!)


I finally looked into insurance coverage, and it looks like a pump will be 100% covered! YAY!


Before I looked into this, I figured maybe I'd get a hand pump to start since I wasn't sure how often I'd have to pump, so why waste the money, but now it seems like I should just get a nice one, and then maybe I'll need it for future babies, etc. Or if I have a preemie in the future, never know.


I guess my question is, when do you start using the breastpump? Should I make getting it before the birth a top priority? Is it nice to have in that first week or two, or what week does it become important? And if it varies, how important is being prepared?


Also looking for recommendations on the pump. Looks like there are one or two Medela models--Freestyle or Pump in Style, and the Ameda Purely Yours, at my local breastfeeding store (I guess I'm lucky that I have such a place closeby!). If anyone has bottle recommendations too, that would be neat. I like the idea of glass bottles (since plastics are porous and soak up smells over time), and I like the idea of being able to store or freeze it in the bottle? Can you do that?



post #2 of 8

Breastfeeding does not equal the need for a breast pump or bottles.


Most women don't ever need pumps or bottles unless they choose to use them. Unless you are going to back to work at a specified date than you can buy one at your convenience, if you choose to use bottles at some point. It is best to avoid the early introduction of bottles (nipple confusion) and expressed milk if you can because these are real risks, especially IMHO for first time moms. Also, breastfeeding is far more effective at building supply so you shouldn't need to pump unless you know you have an issue and are doing so at the suggestion of a LLL leader or IBCL. You'd be much better off to learn to nurse without involving the other things and then involving the other things *if you want them.*

post #3 of 8
I agree with PP, it's not a necessity.
However, I own the medela pump in style which works good, but for some reason it only works for me on the let down setting. As soon as it switches to the second mode, nothing will come out...so I keep pressing the button to make it go back to the first setting. Idk, maybe it's just me.
I also have the medela harmony (I think) hand pump, I personally prefer it.
post #4 of 8
Thread Starter 
Thank you! Makes sense. A couple other concerns...I was told in a class that there may be times when I may need to express milk to relieve pressure. What if that happens? Is there such a thing as using your hand and does that normally work? Or should you tough it out so you don't end up producing too much and then always having to pump the excess?
post #5 of 8
If u have to relieve pressure, u could just squirt enough with your hand to get relief, typically if u pump at those times your signaling your body to keep producing more milk. I have only had to do this a time or two over the course of BFing 4 babies. As long as your not separated from your LO you shouldn't have that problem too often. In my experience, when my boobs are full, my LOs belly is empty ;-)
post #6 of 8

The Stanford Newborn Nursery's website has good information on expressing milk by hand if you find that you're dealing with engorgement.



post #7 of 8

With kid #1, I knew I'd be back at work after 12 weeks, so I had to buy all that stuff.


With kid #2, I was not working, so I only needed a pump temporarily in the very beginning (to help establish a supply--the baby was too sleepy to nurse well for the first three or so week, so I had to pump after or in between nursing for a few weeks).  Haven't used a pump since.


If you are likely to be a SAHM, you may not need a pump, or may be fine with just renting one if you do need one for some medical reason.


Bottles, you might need, since there will likely be times when you want to leave the babe with someone else, and when you're breastfeeding, your window of time to be away from the baby is short. You can either learn to hand express, or use a simple pump.  


I've always just used whatever, when it comes to bottles.  I usually get glass because it holds up the longest, but it's hard to find here.  Apparently Gerber discontinued their line of glass bottles, and now the only thing I'm seeing on the market is Dr. Browns, which is spendy.  Oh well.


In a nutshell, don't race off to buy that stuff unless you' re sure you actually need it.

post #8 of 8

Hopefully you're holding your little one right now, and not even thinking about pumps. :) But just to add to what others say - I work for a lactation consultant, and she always recommends waiting till after the baby is born to buy a pump, because you don't know what you'll need - you could be find with a standard pump, or you could end up needing a hospital-grade rental if you/baby have problems. Or, in rare cases, you might not end up being able to nurse at all, and then you're out a couple hundred bucks for a pump.


You do not have to pump/give bottles if you don't want to. That works fine for some people. Personally, it made me insane to never be able to leave my baby for more than 2 hours. But I didn't have a choice, as LO was physically unable to take a bottle until 6 months. There were only a handful of times I pumped to relieve pressure - usually when the baby slept for an exceptionally long period of time. If you're that full, hand expression shouldn't be too hard. And if I'd had to, I could have woken up the baby to nurse.


I personally have a single electric pump, and I really wish I had a double pump. It wouldn't have been worth the money for me to buy one myself, but I wish I would have realized insurance would still have covered one when he was 5 months old and the new law took effect. It's just so, so time-consuming to pump each side separately. I also can't use mine hands-free, which makes it even more annoying.

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