When to Use a Breast Pump

The first few days in the hospital, moms are encouraged to directly breastfeed as much as possible. This is the easiest for mom and baby and avoids the need for giving baby a bottle, which may make breastfeeding more difficult. In addition, colostrum is very thick and far back in the breast, and the baby is more efficient at expressing it than a pump.

Occasionally, mom may need to start pumping. Some of those reasons can include:

  • Baby is not latching or is unable to breastfeed
  • Baby has a doctor’s order to increase intake (for jaundice, weight loss or low blood sugar)
  • Mom has flat or inverted nipples

In these circumstances, mom will start pumping with a hospital-grade double electric pump. Your nurse or lactation consultant will set it up and show you how and when to use it.

When you are ready to buy your own pump for use at home, choose a good, quality model.