Breastfeeding and Breast Pumps
Experts agree that breastfeeding is superior to formula for the health of you and your baby. Some compelling statistics show:
Breast milk is uniquely superior than any substitute and is the model by which all alternative feeding methods are judged.
Breastfed babies experience 30 percent fewer illnesses than formula fed babies.
Breastfed babies are less likely to suffer from ear infections, allergies, vomiting, diarrhea, pneumonia, wheezing, bronchitis, and meningitis.
Breast milk is nutritionally perfect for infants.
Breastfeeding reduces the risk of breast, uterine and ovarian cancer women.
If every baby in the U.S. was breastfed for as little as 12 weeks, it would save the $1-2 billion in health care costs. If every baby was breastfed for one year, it would save as much as $1-5 trillion annually.
The question is no longer who needs a breast pump, it's who doesn't? With so many dual income families and new mothers having to go back to work early after giving birth, a good reliable breast pump is a must. When shopping for a breast pump be sure to ask yourself these important questions:
What do I need from my breast pump?
The answer may seem obvious, but with so many breast pumps out there offering so many different options, accessories, and sizes, it's important for you to know what your needs are before you buy. For instance, are you a working mom or will you be pumping mostly at home? Are you looking for an electric or a manual pump? Do you prefer a backpack or purse-like tote for your breast pump? Do you want a pump that sucks or an expresser that massages the milk from your breasts? Are you planning on having just one child or will you need something that will last through multiple babies? These questions should help give you an idea of what type of breast pump will best suit your lifestyle.
Who makes the best breast pump?
Again, this all depends on what you need in a breast pump. A couple of the most reputable companies are Whittlestone, Ameda, Bailey and Medela. You'll find that each of these companies offers a wide array of models and prices. So depending on your needs, you can spend as little as $60 and as much as $800. Prices will depend on factors such as whether you choose manual or electric, the speed of pumping (motor), accessories, ease of use, and reliability. For instance, the $800 hospital-grade breast pump from Ameda will last many more years than your $200 Medela.
What else should I know?
A lot of companies on the Internet offer free shipping when you purchase a breast pump. One thing to remember, however, is that many companies increase the price of their product to make up the difference. Look for a company that specializes in a few products rather than offering a little bit of everything. You're bound to receive a better and more knowledgeable customer service professional than you would at one of the larger, corporate-run, pregnancy mall sites. A great company to work with is Stork Radio. They deal exclusively in fetal dopplers and breast pumps and only offer the highest quality products at incredibly reasonable prices.