Being a mom is not easy, I guess any mom would have told you that. That's why people invented gadgets, to help aid moms (especially when the baby's crying and the mom is frantic and on the edge of becoming slightly cuckoo, just kidding!).
As mentioned in my previous post, I bought a Philips Avent Natural Manual Breast Pump. I chose Philips Avent's Natural range because of this video, and the reason for a manual pump is because I'm not sure on my ability to breastfeed. As of now, I am breastfeeding half of the time and the other half, I have to resort to formula milk (I'm not able to fully breastfeed due to cracked and sore nipples; overusing thy nipples is not a good thing peeps!).
So here's my review on the pump:
Philips Avent has several different ranges of baby bottles and pumps to choose from, so to distinguish between the Natural range and the other ranges, the box for the Natural range is color coded in purple.
Inside the box you'll find the manual pump, a small 4 oz bottle complete with the teat and bottle cover.
What I like most about the pump is that it's very convenient to use, just put the pump onto the breast (strategically positioning thy nipples in the middle opening of the pump) and pump away (make sure there's adequate pressure on the breast to ensure vacuum so that the breast pump can do its job perfectly). It's very handy and small, thus making my job easier and you don't need extra effort to pump. Usually I'll just pump for 15 minutes per breast and I'll get about 40 - 60 ml of milk letdown.
Washing and cleaning is also very easy;
Here's the dismantled pump after I've washed the parts. Getting the parts apart is also very easy, you can just pull them gently off (it takes less than a minute to get them off), wash them then sterilize them in the sterilizer.
However, before you go running to the next baby-mommy store to purchase the breast pump, there are some things that you need to know:
1. The bottle should not be placed too tightly to the pump. I don't know why but this causes the milk to trickle down to the bottle opening and trickle out (instead of into the bottle). Just turn the bottle gently to lock it to the pump. If you notice milk dripping out from the bottle/ pump, that means the bottle is too tightly locked to the pump. Loosen it then continue pumping.
2. You have to be sitting with your back straight (no slouching!) to ensure that milk drops into the bottle (otherwise your milk will be going wherever gravity intended them to). I found out about this the hard way and discovered my clothes drenched with my own breast milk. It was rather disappointing to see your milk being collected by your shirt rather than in the bottle. What made it even more disappointing is that I was only able to pump 10 ml per breast at that time *sigh*.
Overall I'm quite satisfied with my purchase. Am definitely thinking about getting Philip Avent's Double Electric Breast Pump by the end of the month (I must make sure that I'm really committed to breastfeeding so I'm giving myself a few more weeks of manual pumping as a test).
So I pump about three times a day (if I'm able to, but if not, then at least a minimum of once a day) other than direct latch (when the nipple is not sore) about once or twice a day and followed by formula milk several times a day. Usually the pumped milk is depleted almost immediately; total pump is about 80 ml (left and right breast) and the baby usually takes about 60 - 90 ml of formula per feeding session so, the next feeding session will most probably have to rely on formula.
So for those who are expecting and thinking about breastfeeding, I'd definitely recommend Philips Avent Natural range breast pumps and bottles. Baby Alexa is also adjusting well to the bottle and so far there's no indication that she prefers the bottle over her mum's au naturel nipple =).
xoxo Mrs Fashionista