What to Expect: The First Time Using a Breast Pump as a New Mom

Using a breast pump for the first time as a new mom can be a new and slightly challenging experience. However, with the right guidance and understanding, you can have a successful and comfortable first pumping session — followed by many more in the coming weeks and months.

At The Breast Pump Store, we are passionate about connecting new mothers with insurance covered breast pumps that are perfect for raising their infants and giving them essential nutrients. If you’re about to welcome a new little one into the world, or if this is your first time using an electric breast pump, we can help make the process seem less intimidating. In this blog post, we will provide you with valuable insights on what to expect when using a breast pump for the first time. From understanding the parts of a breast pump to the sensations you may feel, we've got you covered!

Familiarizing Yourself with the Parts of a Breast Pump

Before you start using an electric breast pump, it's essential to become familiar with its components. The typical breast pump consists of a few key parts:

  • Breast Shields: These cone-shaped pieces fit over your breasts and create a seal to facilitate milk expression.
  • Pump Unit: This houses the motor that creates the suction necessary for expressing milk.
  • Milk Collection Container: Usually a bottle or breast milk storage bag, it is used to collect the expressed milk.
  • Tubing: This connects the breast shields to the pump unit, allowing milk to flow efficiently.
  • Power Source: Breast pumps may be battery-operated or electric, depending on the model.

Understanding How a Breast Pump Works

Insurance covered breast pumps all function by replicating a baby's natural sucking action, stimulating milk flow, and drawing out breast milk. Using these tools as a new mom is key if your baby is having trouble breastfeeding or if you’re interested in stocking up on breast milk to store and use for later. Either way, it’s easy to use an electric breast pump effectively. Follow these steps:

  • Begin by thoroughly washing your hands.
  • Assemble the breast pump according to the manufacturer's instructions (these should be provided in the product box.)
  • Position the breast shields over your breasts, ensuring a comfortable fit.
  • Start the pump on a low suction level and gradually adjust it to a comfortable vacuum level.
  • Relax and allow the pump to do its job. Your body will naturally release milk in response to the pump's suction signals.
  • Once milk flow slows down, consider switching breasts or taking short breaks to encourage the let-down reflex.

Sensations and Adjustments

What’s important to understand as a new mom above all else is this: Using a breast pump shouldn't be painful! However, as you start using it for the first time, you may experience some discomfort or a tingling sensation as your body adapts.

If you encounter pain, try adjusting the vacuum level or repositioning the breast shields to find a more comfortable fit. Experiment with different suction levels and patterns to determine what works best for you. Refer to the electric breast pump's manual for guidance or consult with a lactation consultant. With practice and time, you will become more comfortable and efficient at pumping and it can be an effective alternative to traditional breastfeeding. 

Time Frame and Frequency

The duration of a pumping session varies from woman to woman. On average, a breast pumping session lasts about 15 to 20 minutes per breast. However, this can depend on your milk supply and individual needs. Initially, you may only yield a small amount of milk, but don't be discouraged. As you establish a routine and your body adjusts, the volume of milk expressed will increase. It is advisable to pump every two to three hours, or as often as your baby would typically feed. Consistency and dedication are key to maintaining milk supply and potentially building up a freezer stash.


Get Insurance Covered Breast Pumps Now

Using a breast pump for the first time may seem overwhelming, but armed with knowledge and support, it can be an empowering experience. Familiarize yourself with the different parts of the breast pump, understand how it works, and make adjustments as needed to ensure a comfortable pumping session. Remember, practice makes perfect, and over time, using a breast pump will become second nature as you navigate your new journey as a breastfeeding mom.

Let The Breast Pump Store be your partner when it comes to connecting you with insurance covered breast pumps. By keeping these essential pieces of medical equipment accessible, we can help make sure every mother has the chance to use these to help raise their newborns. Shop all our electric breast pumps now!

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