6 Products That Make Breastfeeding Way Easier for New Moms
Breastfeeding can be difficult and many new mothers experience difficulties at first. Although most mothers will get better with practice, there are some products that may speed up the process.
In this post, we’ll outline 6 breastfeeding products that will make the experience easier and more relaxing for new moms.
Did you miss last week’s post? We covered the breastfeeding basics for beginners.
Breast pumps are very useful to have whenever you’re not around but your baby still needs to be fed. For example, perhaps you’re going back to work, having a day away or leaving your baby with a babysitter. This way, your baby can stick to breastmilk instead of formula.
In addition, they can help you make more milk. Experts recommend that you empty your breasts each time you nurse to prevent build-up and to keep milk running smoothly. Breast pumps can help empty the remaining milk.
What to Consider When Buying One
- Do not buy a used breast pump. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advises against it.
- Electric or manual? Do you want a manual or electric/battery operated pump?
- Hospital grade pumps. These can be rented if you’re having trouble pumping.
- Single or double? Most electric pumps are double—meaning they can pump both breasts at once. However, some are single pumps.
- Returning to work? Electric pumps are a good option if you’re frequently away, such as returning to work.
- Electric pumps have variable cycling times and adjustable suction levels.
- Sucking patterns. Some models mimic a baby’s sucking pattern to make it more comfortable.
- On-the-go? If you’re frequently on-the-go, a model with a built-in battery pack may be best.
- Occasional pumping. Manual pumps are more portable and suitable for moms pumping only occasionally.
- Manual pumps more natural. Some moms find that manual pumps feel more natural because they can control the suction by hand.
- Manual pumps typically pump one breast at a time. Some are made for one-handed use, but most require two hands.
- Manual pumps take longer to use. Some mothers find the process tiring.
- Amazon rating: 4.4/5 with about 235 reviews
- Mimics baby’s natural sucking and has 9 levels to adjust
- Anti-backflow design prevents milk from flowing backward and being contaminated
- Breast massager for relaxation and to express more milk
- Charge by battery, AC adapter or USB
- Amazon rating: 4/5 with about 2,830 reviews
- Made for occasional uses
- Lightweight design makes it portable and discreet
- Easy-to-use and comfortable to pump
- Amazon rating: 4.3/5 with about 1,520 reviews
- Closed pumping system keeps tubing dry and prevents contamination
- Completely adjustable with adjustable suction and 2-phase cycling in let-down and expression mode
- Reviewers say it’s comfortable and expresses quickly
- No battery power option
Prenatal or Postnatal Vitamins
Prenatal vitamins aren’t just for conception and pregnancy—they can also help you lactate!
To make sure you’re getting your daily vitamins and minerals, it can be helpful to take a prenatal or postnatal vitamin.
What to Consider
- Stay with prenatal vitamins. You may consider staying with the vitamins you took during pregnancy if you’re happy with the brand.
- Postnatal vitamins contain additional vitamins that support lactation. These can include additional vitamin D and B vitamins.
- Some postnatals contain herbs. Herbs such as fenugreek, fennel seed and coriander have been used for centuries for lactation.
- During this time, many women lack iron, so you should choose a prenatal containing iron. If taking iron causes you stomach upset or constipation, you may consider taking a separate iron supplement that’s easier on the stomach, such as a liquid brand.
- You need 1,000 mg of calcium a day. Prenatal supplements usually contain about 200 mg., so be sure to drink milk or a calcium-fortified beverage.
- 30 tablets
- In addition to essential vitamins, it contains plant-derived DHA
- Contains 200% daily value of vitamin D
- Contains 200mg. calcium
- Liquid vitamin
- 200 mg DHA
- Contains vegetarian vitamin D ergocalciferol, making it safe for those with meatless diets
- High potency and high absorption vitamins, minerals and herbs
- 90 capsules
- Recommended by the American Pregnancy Association
- Contains a compressive blend of vitamins and minerals
- Contains fenugreek, fennel seed and coriander
If you’re having trouble getting your baby to latch properly, you may suffer from sore or cracked nipples. While the long-term solution is to get a good latch, using nipple cream can provide relief in the short term.
What to Consider
- Is organic important to you?
- Hypoallergenic brands help prevent problems
- Be sure the cream is baby-safe since your baby will come into contact with it
- Shouldn’t leave a smell or taste
- Purchase one with moisturizing ingredients
- Amazon rating: 4.7/5 with about 2,640 reviews
- Organic and cruelty-free
- Safe for ingestion and effective for pain relief
- Full refund offered if not satisfied
- Amazon rating: 4.5/5 with about 345 reviews
- Organic formula with only 5 ingredients
- Soothes, protects and moisturizes
- Safe for ingestion
- Amazon rating: 4.6/5 with about 2,500 reviews
- #1 recommended by lactation consultants and doctors in the US
- 100% natural and free of harmful chemicals (safe for babies)
- Moisturizing properties
- Has other uses, such as lips, cuticles, brows and heels
A nursing bra can be helpful to have because unlike normal bras, it allows for expansion when your milk comes in. It will also allow you to easily remove one side for nursing.
What to Consider
- Ensure the bra has enough flexibility so it will be comfortable both when you’re full of milk and after nursing. Because you’ll likely leak milk, you may want to wear a nursing bra more often than you would a regular bra. For this reason, you’ll want to ensure the bra you choose is comfortable.
- Just like a regular bra, nursing bras come in varying sizes, so be sure to choose the right one. When considering a brand, read their specific size chart and measure yourself.
- Drop away bra cup. It will be easier if the bra you choose has a drop away bra cup.
- Seamless and wireless bras add an extra level of comfort, which you’ll appreciate in your nursing days.
- Because you’ll probably use your nursing bra often, if not daily, you may want to consider buying multiples or choosing a brand that comes in a 3-pack.
- Breathable fabric. Choosing a bra with ribbed fabric between the breasts will allow your skin to breathe and will allow for stretching when your size fluctuates.
- Bravado! Designs Women’s Maternity Body Silk Seamless Nursing Bra
- iLoveSIA 3PACK Womens Seamless Nursing Bra Bralette
- HOFISH 3 Pack Seamless Clip Down Deep V Neck Push Up Nursing Bra
If your baby has latch problems or you’re just beginning to nurse, a nipple shield can help you continue to breastfeed without pain. If you have flat or inverted nipples or overactive letdowns, give nipple shields a try.
What to Consider
- Nipple shields come in varying sizes. Be sure to choose the right one or buy a few to find your right size.
- Cut-out shapes allow for more skin-to-skin contact.
- Ensure the shield is made without harmful chemicals like BPA.
- Multiple holes allow your baby to drink more milk.
- Medela Contact Nipple Shield
- Momma Bear Nipple Shields
- Lansinoh Contact Nipple Shield with Carrying Case
When you begin breastfeeding, you may notice that you leak breastmilk throughout the day. Not only can this lead to a messy shirt, but that breastmilk is being wasted. Luckily, there are small, soft cups you can place inside your bra that will catch the milk instead of absorbing it like nursing pads do. They’ll save you some pumping. Most brands are washable and reusable.
Note: Keeping your milk inside the milk saver for too long can lead to contamination.
What to Consider
- Amount collected. How much milk can the product collect at one time? How long will you wear it for?
- Is the product flexible and soft?
- Ensure the brand you choose is BPA-free.
- Milkies Milk-Saver Breast Milk Collector Storage
- Breast Shells, Nursing Cups, Milk Saver, Protect Sore Nipples for Breastfeeding
- Lacti-Cups Nursing Cups
Do you know any other must-have products to make breastfeeding easier? If you do, comment them below! Be sure to share this post with your pregnant and new mother friends, too!
P.S. If you’re still pregnant, you need to check out our fetal dopplers. These amazing handheld devices allow you to listen to your baby’s heartbeat while they’re still inside the womb. Check them out here.