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Thread: Expressing

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    45

    Default Expressing

    I was reading a book about breast feeding recently and was feeling sort of overwhelmed at the cost and time consumption of pumping. I honestly had no idea pumps cost so much- and that sometimes you have to actually rent them! (here I thought BF was cheap )

    In the book, however, there was maybe a three sentence blurb on hand expressing, which said it was pretty quick (and free!) to do, with the only downside being having to get pretty upclose and personal with your breast. I honestly didnt see what the big deal about that was. I mean, if you're feeding someone with your own breasts, I think that's already pretty upclose and personal. I think I'd honestly feel more awkward hooking myself up to a pumping contraption than hand expressing.

    But it seems like people dont really do that, and pumps are much more popular. Is there a reason for this?

    Just curious, thanks for the info!~

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    279

    Default Re: Expressing

    It is possible to express by hand (I've done it when I was about ready to leak and my pump wasn't around), but it isn't nearly as efficient or quick as a pump. That's why most of us have pumps. It isn't the most fun (I always like to make mooing sounds while I'm pumping ), but it ensures my little boy has plenty to eat while I'm away at work. I don't even know how long it would take to fill up two bottles if I had to do it by hand-yikes!

    and if you are looking for a less expensive way to get a pump, check out craigslist or other mommies. I'm going to pass mine on when I'm done with it....

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    238

    Default Re: Expressing

    Just want to mention that there are some theoretical risks to sharing a used "single-user" pump (different from hospital grade rentals). I've spoken to three health care professionals about this topic, and two said it was fine if I got a new kit and one told me you should never use a used pump. That said, lots of people share -- just want to make sure you make an informed choice if you do use some else's.

    I have heard some medical insurance providers will cover the cost of a pump -- you may want to check with provider to see if they do.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    765

    Default Re: Expressing

    Another less expensive way is to get a manual pump. It is not as quick, but it should work. Also, I don't know if you have had your baby yet or not.... but some hospitals will give you a manual pump while you are there.
    Mama to Andrew 6-20-06
    My angel in heaven, Benjamin William 11-2-07 to 11-5-07
    Kaitlyn 6-12-09

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    3,900

    Default Re: Expressing

    It's all very personal. Some mothers find they have better outputs or are more comfortable with a breast pump. Other mothers find that they have better outputs or are more comfortable by hand expressing. Hand expression is definitely the cheapest option!

    Here's what some other mothers think about manual expression:
    http://www.lalecheleague.org/NB/NBMarApr96p51.html

    Here are some different techniques:
    http://www.lactationinstitute.org/MANUALEX.html
    http://www.askdrsears.com/html/2/T024900.asp
    http://www.bflrc.com/ljs/breastfeeding/knack.htm
    http://www.nursingmother.com/helpme/...xpression.html

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    23

    Default Re: Expressing

    Hi, I just wanted to let you know that I only hand express. I usually get 2 to 3 ounces each side and it takes about 15 minutes total. I've had allot of practice (my daughter just turned one) it took allot longer the first times I did it. But I express at least twice a day and freeze for her when I work. So far its been working out well.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    18,063

    Default Re: Expressing

    some moms don't use a pump or hand express much.
    If your not planning on working you can get away with not pumping.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    1,512

    Default Re: Expressing

    You should check with your insurance company. A friend from these boards told me that some insurance companies will cover part of the cost of a breast pump. I checked with mine (Blue Cross and Blue Shield) and they covered 100% of the cost for a Medela PIS Advanced. All I had to do is get a prescription for the pump from the pediatrician and take it to a "durable medical equipment pharmacy." Check with your insurance company!!
    Samantha: born 3 1/2 weeks early on Sept 2006 6lbs 4 oz 18 inches long with situs inversus totalis. Now a strong healthy little girl that wants to be a NICU doctor, loves her little sister and breastfeeds her dolls!
    Milk donated with while nursing first LO: 2,200 oz
    Alexandra: born 3 weeks early on July 2010 7lbs 8 oz 19.5 inches long.
    Milk donated with while nursing first LO: 1,200


    For information on becoming a Breastmilk Donor http://hmbana.org/index/donatemilk

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    45

    Default Re: Expressing

    Awesome! I actually have blue cross/blue shield too! How do you go about purchasing one through your insurance?

    Thanks guys for the clarification- i was just confused as to why there was so little info on expressing in a book devoted entirely to breastfeeding.

    Thanks!~

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    1,512

    Smile Re: Expressing

    Call the number on your insurance card to verify coverage. Tell them that your Pediatrician has written a prescription for a fully automatic breast pump. Once you verify coverage check their website (or ask them when you have them on the phone) for the number to your closest Approved Durable Medical Equipment Provider (not all will foll an Rx for a breast pump so get a couple of numbers). Next, call your Pediatrician and tell them that you need a prescription for it. In my case, I called the Durable Medical Equipment Provider/Pharmacy to talk to them first (to pick out the type of pump I wanted - Medela PIS Advanced). I called the Pedi office and had them fax a prescription to the Durable Medical Equipment Provider/Pharmacy and they ordered the pump and even delivered it to my home! It took about 10 days to order and get it!

    Of course, the phone call to BCBS will be the longest part of it. Being on hold with a baby is hard but it is Sooooo worth the wait!
    Samantha: born 3 1/2 weeks early on Sept 2006 6lbs 4 oz 18 inches long with situs inversus totalis. Now a strong healthy little girl that wants to be a NICU doctor, loves her little sister and breastfeeds her dolls!
    Milk donated with while nursing first LO: 2,200 oz
    Alexandra: born 3 weeks early on July 2010 7lbs 8 oz 19.5 inches long.
    Milk donated with while nursing first LO: 1,200


    For information on becoming a Breastmilk Donor http://hmbana.org/index/donatemilk

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