Breastfeeding 101

Hi, as a working mom, I have to prepare myself well when I need to go back to work. Hence, I need to equip myself with practical tools to optimize my breastfeeding period to my baby. I’d like to share my experience here, because back then I was having difficulties to find a perfect stuff to suit my needs. I will structure it from the most essentials to supporting or optional items.


BREASTPUMP

Spectra 9+ Double Breastpump

Breast pump should be one of your essential, because based on my experience, when your baby need to be treated separately from you for any medical situation, this will help you to feed your baby. And for some cases, such as, if your milk production comes suddenly high, this will help to manage and reduces risk of mastitis.

As a working mom, I need to find the most efficient equipment to support my activities. Before I decided what was the best for me, I did research to found out what are the types of breast pump available out there. There are 2 types of them which are manual and electrical breast pumps. But for manual, all of them are single pump, so I did not think this is efficient enough for me.

How I define efficient are as follows: 1. Less noise, 2. Comfortable, 3. Handy & Easy to clean, 4. Parts are available locally, and of course, 5. maximum output.

By having double breast-pump, you cut the production time to half. This will save your time a lot, so you can minimize working extra hours for taking many pumping breaks.

Even better if you also buy the hands-free bras, so you can still work while pump. Hazel free, right!

Other people recommendation on Electric Breast pump

I also read some reviews about Electrical Breast pump, there is a similar item like this which is Medela Swing Maxi but the price is a bit higher. If you want to have a single electrical breastpump, Medela Swing and Phillips Avent are the most recommended item in this type.


SILICONE BREAST PUMP

Silicone Breastpump with Cap

I’d say that whoever invented this is a genius! Why? Because here is my story..

Since I have to start building milk inventory to cover my baby needs while I am away, I started stock up when my baby was 3 weeks old. I think I was a bit late, since other working mom started since day 1. But I wasn’t sane enough especially when I have a baby who wakes up every other hour.

Until after 3 weeks I realize that I have to start building up stock, and the most efficient way is to pump and feed at the same time. Yes everything has to go in parallel. It saves time and turns out it is also maximized the output. Because when the other side is feeding, it triggers the other to produce milk.

My first breastpump was a gift, so I couldn’t really choose. It wasn’t suits my need because it was electrical and very noisy, so when I pumped when my baby asleep he woke up right away. So I have to find another solution. I found a manual breastpump by Medela, called Medela Harmony, it was much better. No noise at all, but it takes time to re-assemble after wash.

One day, I found something in one of online shop I found in Instagram. It was unique, and the way it works amazed me because it was really simple. No expectation at the first time when I bought it. But when i tried to use this silicone breastpump, the output is as much as the manual breastpump I used previously. What a magic!

I really recommend this stuff for all moms, regardless you’re a working mom or full-time mom who directly breastfed your baby.


BREAST CARE

For me, breast care means how to take care of the “production unit” so it is healthy and always on its optimum performance. Usually, after you give birth, each mom will face different situation. Some will be just fine and feed their baby directly effortlessly and less drama. But others would just the other way around. No judgement here, but everyone needs breast care anyway. Most of hospitals will give it as a basic service, so in case it is not, please see below.

  1. Massage / Maternity Compress Pack. On my first day of breastfeeding everything went well, until the next day suddenly the production went high and I urgently had to pump. But it did not went well either, because the breast itself still need some times to adjust pumping activities so it did not help the situation at all. The nurse had to help by giving massage, but at the same time I also need a Hot Compress Pack to help to reduces the pain. If you don’t have it yet when you need it, you can use hot towel or hot
  2. Nipple Care. This is always an issue for a first timer. I would recommend to use a natural olive oil food-grade/for cooking, so if it doesn’t washed out well, the remaining still safe for your baby.

BREASTMILK STORAGE

One of the most frequently asked questions are: How do you store your breastmilk once pumped? Do you use plastic bag or glass bottle? Do you use deep freezer or regular refrigerator?

It depends on your need and objective of storage. For me, since I need to stock up for quiet a long time to cover the demand fluctuation of the baby while I am away for work, I need to use deep freezer. It can store your milk around 4–6 months long. But for full-time mom, who usually directly breastfed their baby, they don’t require as much capacity as I did so the regular fridge will do. But again, it depends on your needs and objective of storing.

In terms of whether I use plastic or glass bottle. It depends on your storage capacity. Using plastic is very flexible and efficient especially if you have space issue. I would recommend plastic bag from Gabag because it has double seal, and so far I never experienced any leakage. The downside of using plastic bag is, it is not environmental friendly because it is disposable. Glass bottle, on the other hand it is environmentally friendly because you can wash it and reuse it, but the downside is it requires space.

Last but not least, if you travel, then you will need a thermal /cooler bag with ice gel/blue ice in it to carry those milk. If you travel by plane, I would recommend to use plastic bag while carry it when frozen, since it will avoid leakage. Using bottle when traveling by plane usually could not bear the pressure change.


Hopefully this post summarizes the most essential and most frequently asked items for breastfeeding. Don’t forget to enjoy your breastfeeding moment with your baby! Keep your eye contacts and enjoy the bonding moments with them.