Which Type of Breast Pump Should You Get?

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Image adapted via Flickr/ kanarinka

As I'm nearing the end of my breastfeeding relationship with my now toddler and my fourth child, I've had a lot of experience in breastfeeding. I've experienced under-supply, over-supply, being separated from my child, a tongue tie, and being constantly used as a pacifier. I've also tried the three main varieties of breast pumps over the past nine years as a parent, and looking back, I made some mistakes and some great choices.

{ MORE: How to Gain Weight While Breastfeeding }

When you're shopping for a breast pump, realize that not all of them are made alike. Each one has their pros and cons from cost to ease of use. Finding the right one for you can make a difference in meeting your breastfeeding goals.

If you're not sure if you will need a breast pump or which one is best for you, we'll break it down for you.

 

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Image via ToysRUs

Single Manual Pump

When I had my first child, I had a single manual pump because I had intentions of breastfeeding exclusively, but wanted to have one in the house in case. In hindsight, this wasn't the right pump for me, because when I started to struggle with breastfeeding, having an easier option available that didn't take a lot of time, like the manual pump did, would have been better.

Is it for you? If you're only going to occasionally pump for random evenings out or to gently relieve some engorgement in the first few weeks, this is a good option.

Which one to try? Phillips AVENT Manual Pump, $44.99

{ MORE: Despite What It Might Seem Like Online, Almost 65% of Moms Surveyed Support This }

 

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Image via Meddela

Double Electric Pump

The double electric was my favorite pump when I was actively pumping because it worked quickly, and that was important when I had a bunch of other young children. You can buy ones that are great for when you're outside the house, and being able to empty both breasts at the same time is so handy.

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Is it for you? If you're planning to exclusively breastfeed while you're back at work, or you're looking to build a frozen supply at home, it's great.

Which one to try? Medela Pump In Style(R) Advanced, $299.99 – $359.99

 

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Image via Ameda

Hospital Grade Pump

I used a hospital grade pump when my third child was born while I was having some serious issues with undersupply (thanks to a kidney infection I had). This pump works better than any other I had used, and you can often rent one from your pharmacy or hospital. It's recommended for mothers who are pumping to correct undersupply or if your baby is in the NICU or if you need a reliable pump that can help initiate supply or to start a collection for your baby.

Is it for you? If you're separated from your child after birth or in the first few weeks, you're having issues with supply this can help jump start. Also, it's a great option if you're looking to exclusively pump and bottle.

Which one to try? Ameda Elite Breast Pump, $varies

{ MORE: Why You Need a Breastpump (And The Best Way to Get One!) }

How often did you use your breast pump? Share in the comments!

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Which Type of Breast Pump Should You Get?

Devan McGuinness is the founder of the online resource Unspoken Grief, which is dedicated to breaking the silence of perinatal grief for those directly and indirectly affected by miscarriage, stillbirth and neonatal death. Using her own experience of surviving 12 miscarriages, Devan has been actively supporting and encouraging others who are wading through the challenges associated with perinatal and neonatal loss. Winner of the 2012 Bloganthropy Award and named one of Babble's “25 bloggers wh ... More

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