If you breastfeed your baby, you do it because you have the very best in mind for your baby's health. So if you're a working mother, you certainly won't find the idea of feeding your child formula encouraging when you're away working. And it doesn't even have to be about working in an office. Even when you are at home, you will absolutely need to go outside once in a while leaving your baby to the care of someone else, won't you? What will they feed the child formula? Not if you can help it. You'll need to have breast milk saved up first. Which brings us to the question which breast pump is best.
Now the market is practically flooded with breast pumps, and it can be kind of overwhelming to the first-time shopper. Before we get with the question of which breast pump is best, let's get something out of the way the question of which time is best to buy a breast pump.
You see, babies don't really take to the bottle that easily when they've been used to the breast. So if you do plan to pump, you're going to have to start doing it well before the time you actually need to do it. You'll need to give your baby practice sessions with your milk from a bottle. In fact, it would make a lot of sense if you started when the baby was no more than one month old. Do it once it or twice a week, and your baby will be well-prepared for this strange new alternative to your breast once you actually need to leave.
There are all kinds of models and styles of breast pump on the market. Basically though, they fall into one of two categories the hand-operated manual type where you provide the suction needed with a hand-operated pump; and the electrical model which can be somewhat expensive. Usually women tend to prefer one or the other, rather strongly. It's a matter of personal preference.
Basically, pumping breast milk isn't an efficient process. It takes a great deal of time to coax your breast to put out even a small quantity milk. If you anticipate that you will often need to leave your baby with enough to last hours and hours everyday because you'll be off to work, you'll need to get an electrical pump that really works quickly and efficiently. They call these hospital-grade breast pumps. These come with double suction cups one for each breast so that you can bring out as much milk as possible in the least amount of time. But these are expensive. They cost about $2 a day to rent and $1000 to buy.
If you don't want to go quite that high-end, personal breast pumps come at a variety of price points. The top-of-the-line ones are just as efficient as the hospital-grade ones, but are lighter and cheaper. They also feature computer-controlled suction patterns to mimic those of a baby. You keep your breasts from hurting this way. They only cost about $200 or so. . And oh, don't even think of sharing these. Milk gets into the internal parts.
The inexpensive $100 models can be pretty good too. They work at about the fourth the speed of the better and more expensive pumps, so you'll have to spend longer at the machine for a given quantity of milk. But these should be fine for you if you don't anticipate that you will need to leave your baby with lots of milk or leave your baby often.
For the most part, the answer to the question of which breast pump is best comes down to personal preference and what your actual needs are.