As a new mom, you may have already realized that babies require essential items to thrive. One such item is the breast pump. It's an invaluable device that allows mothers to continue breastfeeding their little ones even when they can't do it naturally due to work or other external commitments.
But what should you do with your used pump? This blog article will provide helpful information on how to properly care for and dispose of your pump after use, so as not to risk exposing yourself or baby to potential health hazards.
As a mom-to-be, this article has all the tips and tricks recommended by doctors and lactation consultants - making sure both you and your baby are safe from any harm caused by extended use or misuse of this important piece of equipment.
With our straightforward instructions in hand, there’s no reason why disposing of a used breast pump should be anything but easy!
What You Should Do With Your Old Breast Pump
If you're a momma who's done with breastfeeding, chances are you're wondering what to do with that old breast pump. We get it, you don't want to just toss it in the trash, but you also don't want it taking up precious space in your storage. Well, we've got some ideas for you.
Breast Pump Donations
First off, have you considered donating it? There are plenty of organizations and moms in need who would be thrilled to receive a gently used pump. If you want to help a fellow mom in need, consider donating to a local breastfeeding support group or a women's shelter that accept breast pumps.
Another option is to donate your old breast pump to a local hospital or breastfeeding clinic. Many of these facilities accept gently used pumps and will sanitize them for use by other nursing mothers.
There are also several non-profit organizations like the Human Milk Banking Association of North America that accept donations of breast pumps and related supplies to help support milk banks and milk sharing among communities in need.
Sell Eligible Breast Pumps
If you're looking to recoup some of the cost, websites like Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, and eBay are great places to sell your pump. Just make sure to thoroughly clean and sanitize your pump before passing it along.
Keep For Future
You can always keep the pump safely stored away for future children if you think this may be an option for your family, or to give to family members.
Pump Recycling Programs
Some breast pump manufacturers offer a recycling program. Medela is a great promotor of this. That's why we love the Medela brand.
Think outside the box
If all else fails, try repurposing it! It can be used as a milk storage organizer or even as a makeshift toy for your little one to play doctors with.
Whatever you choose to do, just know that there are plenty of ways to give your old pump a new life.
How To Properly Clean And Sterilize Your Used Breast Pump
Breast pumping can be a lifesaver for new mothers, but it's important to remember that cleaning and sterilizing your used breast pump is just as crucial as using it correctly.
To properly clean your breast pump, you'll want to start by taking it apart and washing all parts that come in contact with breast milk with warm, soapy water.
After washing, rinse each part thoroughly with hot water and place them on a clean towel to air dry. Once dry, you can sterilize the parts by boiling them in water for 5-10 minutes or by using a steam sterilizer. Remember to clean your breast pump after every use to ensure the safety of both you and your baby and also before donating or selling it to another mom.
When To Replace Parts
As a new mom, you want to make sure you're doing everything possible to provide the best nutrition for your baby. That's why a breast pump can be a lifesaver, allowing you to pump and store breast milk for when you're away. But when is it time to replace parts?
It's important to regularly inspect your pump for any signs of wear and tear, and to replace parts as needed, to ensure optimal performance.
You can usually purchase parts quite easily online.
When To Stop Using A Pump?
As for when to stop using your pump, every mom's journey is different. If you feel like you've reached your breastfeeding goals, or if pumping has become a burden, it might be time to transition away from the pump.
If you are returning to work then this might be the right time, but know that there are discreet, efficient pumps for working moms too.
Remember, the decision is ultimately up to you and what works best for you and your baby.
What to look for when purchasing a new breast pump
Whether you are buying your first pump, or you are upgrading your current model or wanting an additional pump, it's a big decision, but one that will benefit both you and your baby in the long run.
When shopping for a new breast pump, there are a few important factors to consider.
Manual or electric
First, decide on which type of breast pump will best suit your needs. Manual pumps are great for occasional use, while electric pumps are better for frequent pumping.
Speed and settings
Next, make sure the pump has adjustable suction and speed settings for personalized comfort. It's also important to choose a pump with a closed system to prevent milk from flowing back into the pump motor.
Lastly, consider the size and portability of the pump, especially if you plan on using it on-the-go. Are you wanting a pump for work, or for travel or just to keep at home?
Many pumps come with cute carry bags. But also think about the bottles you use, you want your bottles to fit directly on to the pump too, this saves time and is more hygienic. Some bottles are a 3 in 1, and can pump, feed and store.
With these key factors in mind, you're sure to find the perfect breast pump for your breastfeeding journey.
So, Don't Throw That Pump Away!
Taking the necessary steps to properly clean, sterilize, donate or resell your used breast pump is essential in order to ensure that you and other parents who use a breast pump are safe.
Looking into all of your options before investing in a new breast pump will likely save you time and money while equipping yourself with the best possible device for feeding your baby.
If you are considering giving away your pump because you have low milk supply, we have advice for you on how to increase this.
Or if you are considering formula milk now, you can read here about mixing formula and breastmilk.
And if it's the end of your breastfeeding journey all together, well done, you are a super star mom and we congratulate you! Onwards and upwards, but maybe not for your poor boobies!
What To Do With Old Breast Pumps FAQs
If you still have a few queries, please check out these FAQs.
What is a closed system breast pump?
A closed system breast pump is a device that safely collects, expresses, and stores your breast milk without exposing the expressed milk to any bacteria or viruses. If you're considering donating your pump, this is the best type.
Are there advantages to using closed system breast pumps?
Yes, there are several advantages of using a closed system breast pump. These include protecting your expressed milk from contamination and providing greater hygiene when expressing and storing your milk. Additionally, they may be quieter than open-system pumps making them more comfortable and convenient to use. Just keep this in mind when choosing an open or closed system.
How can I recycle my old breast pump?
If you don't want to donate the pump, you may be able to find a recycling facility that will responsibly dispose of it for you. Be sure to check the pump manufacturer's website for more information about how best to handle disposing of your old breast pump.