So, you and your baby have gotten into a rhythm of breastfeeding and you are enjoying the journey. You all have a routine that is both enjoyable and empowering, and then the thought hits you. Maternity leave is dwindling down, and you must prepare for returning to work as a breastfeeding mama.
Pumping at work does not have to be difficult, but it does require you to be prepared. Knowing what breastfeeding essentials are important for pumping at work is key to a successful experience. Below I will share the pumping at work supplies that helped ensure I was able to continue with my goal of a year of breastfeeding for my baby.
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Pumping at work supplies
Breastfeeding at work can be difficult if you are not adequately prepared, but if you have the right supplies you can easily (relatively) transition back to work and maintain a supply that will nourish your baby consistently. These at the top 10 things that I used to make my breastfeeding journey easier as a full-time working mom.
This may go without saying but having a breast pump is absolutely essential to pumping at work. There are many different types to choose from, but I recommend you have two. One of your pumps should be a medical grade breast pump (often these can be covered by insurance). The other pump can be a hand pump model.
For the pump I left at work I used the Medela Pump in Style Advanced Breast pump. I really liked this model because it came in an easy to carry backpack that made transporting the pump very simple.
My hand pump was also a medela model, the Harmony Breast pump. Consistency made the number of parts I had to have on hand easier because they were interchangeable.
Pro tip: Have one breast pump at home and one at work. I left my medical grade pump at my office and just brought home the parts that needed to be cleaned everyday. I used my hand pump at home for night pumping sessions. I also had a Haakaa Manual pump that I used for my early morning nursing session.
Hands Free Nursing bras
Another absolutely essential pumping at work supply is the hands free nursing bra. This must-have pumping item is key to being able to multitask if you need to in order to pump and complete some work tasks such as emails and or computer tasks.
The nursing bra that I used that worked really well was the Momcozy Hands free Nursing bra. I bought multiple and enjoyed this one as both a nursing bra and a pumping bra.
Storing breastmilk at work is an important part of the pumping at work process. Many working moms fret over where they can safely store milk. Many offices do provide a refrigerator in the nursing room for milk storage, but if you are weary of this you can prepare your own.
If you have an office of your own, consider investing in a small refrigerator to store milk, you can also store your pumping bottles in this fridge in between pumping sessions.
This pumping at work supply helps nursing moms helps stave off the embarrassment of leaks. On many occasions these were my saving grace when I could not stay on my pumping schedule. I used these Bamboobies Washable Leak-Proof Nursing pads.
I loved that these were environmentally friendly and they held up well to the wear and tear of daily use.
Extra pumping bottles and parts
Extra parts for your pump including bottles are great to make sure that the pump is working correctly. Changing your pump parts consistently helps make sure of efficiency of your pumps.
This pumping essential will differ based on the type of pump you purchase.
Having storage bags on hand is super important for a working and pumping mama. If you’ll notice I stuck with mostly medela, just because of consistency! You just
One of the major concerns moms who pump at work have is in regards to cleaning breast pump accessories at work. The easiest way to do this is with cleaning wipes specific for breast pumps and bottles. A quick swipe of these Quick Clean Wipes and your breast pump accessories are ready to use!
Quick steam bags
Staying in the mindset of cleaning your breast pump parts at work, having some quick steam bags in the office to quickly sterilize parts is a must. I used these Quick Clean bags from Medela.
Traveling bag or lunch box
It’s also important to have a storage bag for transporting milk to and from the workplace everyday. Maybe this bag is overkill, but I was a new mama and wanted to make SURE my milk was secure, so I used this Yeti Daytrip lunch box.
I liked that this bag was large enough to carry my parts and stored milk home for cleaning purposes.
The last of the pumping at work supplies that is crucial for a successful pumping and working experience. Hydration is important for maintaining your milk supply. Having a bottle present and easily accessible for you during your pumping time will help to make sure you are getting the water you need when you need it.
This Thermoflask Double Stainless Steel Insulated Water Bottle is great because of its ease to carry (you already have enough to carry). Plus it has a straw!! And who doesn’t love a cup with a straw!
How do I pump enough at work?
When you have the proper breast pump accessories you can be sure that you are at least prepared for pumping at work.
After you’ve gotten the correct pumping at work supplies you may be wondering how do you pump enough for work? There are a few breastfeeding tips that can help making pumping at work easier, but one of the best ways to maintain your supply is to consistently pump.
Having a pumping schedule for work can help you make sure that you are pumping often enough to maintain your supply. Some tips for creating your schedule include:
- Pump for the first time when you get to work
- Make sure to pump at least every 2.5 hours
- Pump right before leaving for the day but about 1 hour before your next feeding with baby
These simple tips can help you create a pumping at work schedule to maintain your supply.