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confused about breast pumps!

(31 Posts)
ALR123 Sat 28-Nov-15 15:17:34

Have bought the Tommee Tippee steriliser and bottle set. Am planning on breast feeding but am confused about what i need!
If I go for an electric breast pump will I need that to be Tommee Tippee also? The girl in Mothercare said I do but it has really poor reviews.
am I jumping the gun and is this something I'd use further down the line and not straight away?
Baby's due in 6 weeks and I'm still as baffled with it all as I was 34 weeks ago!

MrsCrimshaw Sat 28-Nov-15 15:26:16

Hi ALR123, I'm due in early December and had the same confusion. I went to a breastfeeding group earlier this week and the MSWs said don't express for the first 6 weeks. There is an NHS run support group here called MILK which run weekly drop-ins/socials and they can loan breastpumps to be tried out. The sessions are at the local Children and Family centres.

I have only just found out about this scheme, but I think the 6 week breast-only takes the pressure off a bit with knowing what to do straight away, and the pump loan gives you time to work out what works for you, without the expense.

My MW signed me up for the initial workshop - might be worth asking yours too?

villainousbroodmare Sat 28-Nov-15 15:27:02

You don't need a breast pump at all yet; it's suggested that you don't pump in the first three weeks or so anyway just to let your milk come in, supply even out a little etc, and of course see if bf suits you both.
You can buy any pump you wish - Medela and Lansinoh would be two well-regarded brands. Electric is obviously easier than manual, then you can choose if you want it to be also able to operate on battery power, whether you want a double pump etc.
The pump will draw out milk into a bottle. You will then either pour it into a freezer bag or bottle and pop it in the freezer for future use, or feed it to your baby there and then (if for some reason like cracked nipples or anything else that they are not breast-feeding directly). If you were to feed it then and there, you could just take the bottle off the pump and put a teat on top. Or if the teat that you happened to have did not fit the bottle of the breast pump, you'd just pour it into your Tommee Tippee bottle.
(FWIW, Lansinoh bottles match Nuk but Medela don't. It's handy if everything fits together but no way are you now tied into the TT pump, and that girl was an eejit to say you were.)

LillyBugg Sat 28-Nov-15 15:30:33

Yeah you really don't need one yet. If possible avoid pumping in the first 6 weeks like a PP said. It can cause nipple confusion, plus it's extra faff that you just don't need in the early days! I think I bought a pump at about 3 months when bf'ing was really established.

Also, you don't have to get the tommee tippee one like villain says. Matching brands just makes it easier when you can express directly into the bottle that you are going to use to feed.

Oysterbabe Sat 28-Nov-15 15:31:25

As others say, I'm not buying one yet and hoping to just put baby on the breast for a good few months at least.

LibrariesGaveUsP0wer Sat 28-Nov-15 15:34:56

As others have said, you only need your pump to match your bottles if you want to be able to pump straight into the bottle you will use for feeding.

I would recommend learning about open and closed systems though. I wouldn't touch a pump that isn't a properly closed system with a bargepole.

LastOneDancing Sat 28-Nov-15 15:40:20

Just to muddy the waters....
From my own experience I'd do some prep and make sure you can get hold of a pump (loaned or bought) at short notice.
My DS wouldn't latch and hand expressing will only get you through the first couple of days, they need much more as the days progress and you need to keep your milk up.
You don't need to buy one - fx your baby will latch beautifully - but I would try to be prepared by having the number of the loan company/support people and/or the brand of pump you want (and where your DP can buy it) somewhere safe just in case.

JiltedJohnsJulie Sat 28-Nov-15 15:42:22

You don't really need to buy anything for feeding your baby yet. I'd just get some breastpads and a feeding bra. Lots of women, including me, feed their babies but never manage to express a drop.

If you feel you do want to express, you could always try hand expressing. You can also collect and store leaked bm or just buy a breast pump if and when you do need one.

JiltedJohnsJulie Sat 28-Nov-15 15:43:13

And if you have a rocky start, the hospital should be able to loan you a pump smile.

IAmAPaleontologist Sat 28-Nov-15 15:53:43

If you are planning on bf then you don't need a pump at all. If you did want to have the occasional expressed bottle feed then you can always hand express.

bluewisteria Sat 28-Nov-15 15:56:07

You can get sterilised bags that you can pump into then transfer to bottle or freeze. That way you can buy any pump.

Runningupthathill82 Sat 28-Nov-15 18:27:55

Don't buy the tommee tippee electric pump! It's shit. I bought that, the steriliser and the bottles before DS was born - knew I would need to express as was going back to work at 4 months.
Ended up exclusively expressing for 3 months as he wouldn't latch, and hired a hospital grade Medela as the TT wasn't up to it...

Runningupthathill82 Sat 28-Nov-15 18:47:59

Oh, and the TT sterilizer and bottles worked just fine with the Medela double pump, and also with the Boots manual pump I used when I was out and about. There's absolutely no need to get tied into one brand, and all matching stuff.

ALR123 Sat 28-Nov-15 18:52:48

All if this is so useful. Yeah I really didn't want the Tommee Tippee one i went to mothercare to get the medela one but my mum happened to ask the assistant if that was right and when she said no I needed TT I just left it!
Glad I checked now, im going to add it to my list of "things to stop stressing over" and just hope baby takes to breast!
Thanks MrsCrimshaw I'd not heard if that but it sounds ideal, I'll ask.
And thanks to everyone else too :-)

ALR123 Sat 28-Nov-15 18:55:00

Really Runningupthathill , makes me glad to have asked here rather than listen to Muppet store assistants!

LibrariesGaveUsP0wer Sat 28-Nov-15 19:00:08

Please, please read about Medela and open systems before you make a decision. Here

Daffydil Sat 28-Nov-15 19:02:18

Do NOT get the tommee tippee one. It's truly shit. My Lansinoh manual one was far better than the TT electric one.

Any pump will come with bottles. Just pour into storage bags or the bottle you want to feed from.

ALR123 Sat 28-Nov-15 19:07:31

I've just read that article Libraries, now I am confused! Is there one you would recommend that would be safer?

LibrariesGaveUsP0wer Sat 28-Nov-15 19:11:32

Things like the Ameda Lactaline are genuinely closed systems (but pricey).

Some people decide that they are happy with the Medela, but they definitely shouldn't be bought second hand or passed on (as lots of people do).

3sugarsplease Sat 28-Nov-15 19:24:14

I have the tommee tippee one and the pump gave up about after a week angry

I found having a pump super helpful in the earlier days, when my milk came in my breast swelled so much DS could not latch. I tried hand expressing but this didn't help much. I found the only way to get a real relief was to express.

FusionChefGeoff Sat 28-Nov-15 19:25:50

I needed my pump in a pretty urgent, baby not latching situation and also the suction helped make my nipple longer to help him latch. We had bought one with a view to leaving it boxed, ready to return in the rose tinted baby will just feed from the breast scenario. Instead we tore into it at 3am to get enough milk out to syringe feed my baby to just keep him going until I could see a real life BF supporter the next day. It took a few more days to really get the hang of BF and I wouldn't have managed it without the pump as I would have used formula top ups and likely ruined my supply from the off.

So I would advise buying it in advance. You can return it if you don't need it.

Can't comment on the open / closed question but I had the Avent electric one which was great for DC1 but motor died between pregnancies so just used the manual bit (came as a package) for DC2. Was much slower but much easier as didn't have to sit near a plug the whole time!

dlwelly Sat 28-Nov-15 19:38:55

Agree with the above about buying it now. If you can bf with no problems then you won't need it straight away but if not it's good to be able to get a bottle of ebm for the baby - chances are it will be 3am when you're having issues!

I have a medela mini electric and an avent manual pump (the avent was bought at 11pm on a Wednesday night when I couldn't get the baby to latch and we'd ran out of the milk we'd expressed at the hospital!)

i don't often express, only if I'm going out for a couple of hours alone so I tend to use the Avent one as it goes straight into the bottle she uses.

villainousbroodmare Sat 28-Nov-15 19:43:47

Aaaaargh, Libraries, that's pretty unpleasant!
I can say that the pump I happened to buy, the Lansinoh Affinity Pro 2in1 (2in1 meaning electric or battery options) is definitely a closed system.

ALR123 Sat 28-Nov-15 22:18:17

Okay just been reading up the Lansinoh 2-in-1 double electric affinity pro. Looks good and has really good reviews.
Another question... do I need the double or is the single pump sufficient? Is it just beneficial because you express both at the same time?

Runningupthathill82 Sat 28-Nov-15 22:54:16

Totally depends on how much you're going to be expressing, and you have no way of knowing til you're in the throes of it.
I expected to express maybe once a day til I went back to work at 4 months, then maybe 2-3 times.

What I didn't bank on was a baby who wouldn't latch at all, so I exclusively expressed - meaning I was pumping 8x a day, every 3 hours round the clock (yes, nights too!)

In a situation like that, a double pump becomes essential. I was getting 4oz in 40mins with the tommee tippee electric, but once I went onto the double hospital grade Medela I'd get 8 to 10oz in 10mins.

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