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The difference may seem obvious – single means you can express one breast at a time, and double means you can express both breasts at the same time.
But which kind of breast pump is right for you? When you are new to breastfeeding and breast pumping, it can be difficult to choose the right style of pump or compare breast pumps if you are not even sure how to use a breast pump.
The main reasons for expressing milk are to be able to collect it to feed your baby breast milk when you aren’t around, or to be able to share the load of feeding.
For many women, the most difficult thing about expressing is finding the time to fit it into their routine during the workday – especially for mums who work – or finding a comfortable and private place in which to do it.
A single breast pump is well suited to women who want to express milk occasionally, and so may be looking for a more affordable breast pump.
Some women find that one breast supplies more milk than the other, and so one side may become painfully engorged – single pumping is able to relieve this pressure and restore some balance to your breasts.
The greatest advantage of a single breast pump is that you can breastfeed your baby at the same time as expressing from the other breast; a very efficient use of time.
A double breast pump is the best investment you can make if you want or need to express milk regularly.
When you think of a double pump you may call to mind the traditional sort, which looks like two bottles hanging from a boob tube! This is not the case with Freemie pumps, in fact double pumping with Freemie may look more natural than single pumping.
While the cost of a double breast pump may be more than a single breast pump, it is worth the investment for the additional convenience, ease, and speed that dual expressing offers.
Expressing both breasts at the same time cuts your pumping time in half because you are able to collect double the milk in the same time it would take to express with a single breast pump.
In addition, some women find that when they express only from one breast, the other breast will leak milk – this is messy and a waste of precious milk. Double pumping means that you can maximise the amount of milk you collect for your baby.
For mothers who need to express milk for twins or pump for a premature baby, a high-quality electric double pump is the best choice. It allows you to pump both breasts quickly at the same time, so you can get back to your baby’s (or babies’) needs more quickly.
Our recommendation is to invest in a double pump, which can be used as a single when required. This gives you the best of both worlds; you can express from one breast and nurse baby at the same time, or pump from both breasts and save the feed for later.