Breastfeeding 101: What equipment do I actually need to get started?
Good question and good news! You already have what you need to breastfeed your baby: your breasts!
Let’s not over-complicate something that’s rather straightforward to begin with, agreed? Expecting moms are inundated with must-have lists that are bursting at the seams, as if every gadget available is required to make your breastfeeding journey a successful one.
So the question stands, what do you actually need?
You can absolutely breastfeed your baby without all the additional paraphernalia, but we’d be remiss if we didn’t tell you about the very best equipment and supplies that will greatly aid your breastfeeding experience. So in addition to the gear your body already contains, there are just a few items we'd recommend for every single breastfeeding mama (and the first one is free!):
One. An Electric Breast Pump.
Even if you’re not planning on working after your baby arrives, hear us out: having a breast pump on hand is super beneficial.
You’ll likely find there are plenty of reasons why you might need to pump milk -- a premature baby, for time away from your baby, for your partner to aid in feeding, to help maintain your supply, and so on.
The best part is you can get a pump through your insurance company; yep, it’s zero cost to you. (And hey, that’s something we specialize in at Wyatt’s Maternity, so just click here for more information!)
Two. Breastmilk storage bags.
You’ll need somewhere to put that milk!
Storage bags can be refrigerated or frozen, can be plastic or silicone, and purchased anywhere you’d already be shopping for baby supplies. These are also a perfect addition to your baby registry!
You can shop them here.
Three. A silicone hand pump like the Haakaa.
I know what you’re thinking….but wait, do I really need this in addition to an electric pump?
Short answer? YES. An emphatic yes.
Here’s why. Using one is a mindlessly easy way to keep a little extra milk on hand. All you have to do is to attach this type of “pump” to the opposite breast while nursing. It will collect all the excess let down from that side that would otherwise be wasted. A Haakaa-style pump is helpful in the early weeks with engorgement, and can even help relieve clogged milk ducts. So don’t pass on this genius little tool. Get one here!
Are there other supplies and resources that are helpful for breastfeeding moms? Indeed! Helpful, but not necessarily a “must have.” If you're looking to keep things simple, streamlined, and basic, just start with these three. You can always add to your breastfeeding repertoire as the needs (or wants) arise.
Wyatt’s Maternity is here for moms just like you! Helping you start your breastfeeding journey on the right foot is our favorite thing, so we hope you’ll reach out with any questions you have. You can contact us here!