What Do I Really Need to Buy for Breastfeeding?
By Jacque Ordner BSN, RN, IBCLC, RLC
It’s no secret that having a baby is expensive! With all the buzz around certain products, we thought it would be helpful to break down what is a must-have and what might not be necessary (at least at first).
- A good quality, hospital strength, double electric breast pump- It’s true not every breastfeeding mom needs a pump, but it is estimated that 85% of breastfeeding mothers use a pump at some point in their breastfeeding journey. Even if you don’t plan to be separated from your baby for work, you may desire a night out or have to be separated due to other circumstances. If your baby has trouble latching or you need to boost your supply, already having your pump will help prevent added stress.
- An extra set of pump accessories- Duckbill valves, backflow protectors, flanges, tubes, and collection bottles are essential to your pump’s function. Having an extra set can save you or your partner from a midnight run to Target if one of your pieces gets lost or broken.
- Hands-free pumping bra – If you plan to pump, even just occasionally, a hands-free bra can be a game-changer! Going hands-free gives you more freedom and allows for hands-on pumping to help increase pumping output.
- Nursing bras – Many moms find the support of a nursing bra to be comfortable once their milk production ramps up. The convenience of fold-down flaps can lead to reduced frustration when trying to get little one to latch.
- Hydrogel Pads – Your own breastmilk can be helpful for soothing and healing sore nipples, but hydrogel pads offer an added soothing coolness that many moms love. Even if you don’t experience cracked nipples, hydrogel pads can be great to keep on hand for any nipple soreness that might occur.
- A FEW milk storage containers/bags– While it’s tempting to stock up when those nesting urges hit, we recommend only purchasing a few milk storage containers or bags. This gives you the opportunity to try different brands to find what you like before purchasing in bulk.
- Bottles – Breastfed babies can be finicky when it comes to bottles. For this reason, we recommend purchasing only a few to have on hand until you know what works best for your little one. Registering for one of each of a few different brands is a great way to have a few to try when the time comes.
- Water bottle – Staying hydrated is key when making milk! Having a cute water bottle that you enjoy drinking from can be extra helpful when you’re stuck on the couch nursing or pumping. Have a water bottle that you like also encourages you to take it with you to get your water in on the go!
While there are hundreds of products marketed to breastfeeding moms, the above list focuses on the basics to help get you started. With this list, you can avoid expensive purchases that end up going unused. If you find you desire extras like nursing tops, a pumping cart, breast massager, etc, there will be plenty of time to shop online while you’re nursing or pumping for your sweet bundle of joy!
Have pumping or breastfeeding questions? Schedule a free consultation with one of our
Spectra Baby USA IBCLCs HERE.