Bibs, onesies, crib sheets? Check. A high chair? Check. Stroller? You got it. But don’t forget about breastfeeding! Consider adding some items to your baby registry that may make nursing a little easier.
Pumps come in a wide range of prices and styles. If you’re planning to exclusively breastfeed, you probably won’t need one. But if you’re going back to work, and want to continue to nurse, you’ll need to pump. And even if you aren’t working outside the home, you may want a pump for that occasion when you aren’t with your baby.
An electric breast pump is definitely the number one big ticket breastfeeding item to add to your registry. Pumps can be expensive, topping out at a few hundred dollars for advanced models. There are choices for every budget, of course, but you do get what you pay for. So consider what features you need, and don’t be tempted to skimp. The better the pump, the easier pumping will be. While some women are able to get a good flow going with any pump, others find that higher-quality pumps help them produce milk more easily.
Here are some things to think about when buying a pump. Consider the pump’s size, weight, style and features. Does the case scream “breast pump,” and if so, do you care? Will you be carrying your pump with you, or storing it in the same place you use it every day? Also, how easy it is to clean the pump? Can you adjust the suction and speed control? Can you pump both breasts at the same time?
If you’re just looking for a way to store up a little milk for an occasional outing (maybe even a date night!), then an inexpensive, manual pump should be fine, as long as it fits comfortably and works reasonably well.
However, if you’re pumping for twins, or to provide milk for your baby while you’re at full-time job, consider renting a hospital-grade pump.
If you’re going to be pumping regularly, you’ll need a supply of bottles and storage bags for the milk, so be sure to add those to your registry. The more bottles you have, the less often you’ll have to wash them. And there are now even accessories to help you organize your breast milk stash!
A hands-free nursing bra will make multi-tasking a cinch. It has openings where you can simply insert the pump flanges, and you only wear it when you’re pumping.
Other items that any breastfeeding mom may find useful include:
- A nursing cover can help you breastfeed when you’re out in public, and feeling the need for a little extra privacy. Unlike a blanket, a nursing cover attaches around your neck and won’t fall off when you adjust positions.
- A nursing pillow is also nice, to help prop the baby up, bringing her a little closer, and level to, your breast during feedings. Keep in mind, you always have to hold onto your baby, even if you have a pillow.
- Breast creams that help heal and soothe sore nipples can come in handy as well. Not every woman needs them, but they can be a lifesaver.
- Finally, if you’re concerned that you might leak milk through your bra between feedings (happens to some people, but not everyone), get a package of nursing pads to stick in your bra cups. You can buy either disposable or washable pads. Keep in mind that you may leak a lot in the beginning, and very little, or not at all, later on.
So click away and build your wish list. A girl can dream, right?