World Breast Pumping Day 2024 & 10 Interesting Facts About Breast Pumping

World Breast Pumping Day 2024 & 10 Interesting Facts About Breast Pumping
World Breast Pumping Day was created to acknowledge the time, effort, and dedication that pumping breastmilk requires. The day dedicated to breast pumping moms is observed each year on January 27th. Today we're celebrating YOU and ALL pumping moms regardless of the number of times you actually used a pump (16 months daily with my first, zero times with my second), your breastmilk output or the duration of your pumping journey. Breastmilk pumping requires dedication, discipline and hard work, and YOU have done that! 
Cover image credit: beautiful Amanda, Founder & CEO of Davin and Adley
On World Breast Pumping Day 2024, we're sharing 10 interesting facts about breast pumps and breastmilk pumping you might not have known about...
  1. Pioneering Invention: The first breast pump was patented in the United States in 1854 by O.H. Needham. This early design was a hand-operated device with a piston mechanism. The Sucky History Of The Breast Pump article published in The Smithsonian Magazine, has so many fascinating facts!

  2. World Breast Pumping Day was founded by Wendy Armbruster in 2017. Armbruster, who is from Canada, also designed the first hand-free pumping bra. She founded the day as a way to celebrate the community of breast pumping moms and their accomplishments.

  3. Non-Electric Options: Breast pump market is booming! While electric and mobile breast pumps are common today, let's not forget about non-electric options that are still available. Manual breast pumps, operated by hand, are still widely used and can be convenient for occasional use or when an electric power source is unavailable. 

  4. Human Milk Banks: Breast milk obtained through pumping can be donated to human milk banks. These banks provide breast milk to infants in need, especially premature babies who may have difficulty breastfeeding. Donated milk is carefully screened and pasteurized before being distributed. You can find the nearest milk bank in your area through Human Milk Banking Association of North America

  5. Expressing Hindmilk: Breast pumping allows mothers to collect both foremilk and hindmilk. Foremilk is the milk that is released at the beginning of a feeding, while hindmilk is released towards the end. Pumping sessions may not always extract hindmilk fully, but techniques like "double pumping" can help mix the two.

  6. Different Flanges for Different Moms: This one was a surprise for me! I never knew it was necessary to check the flange size! Flanges, the cone-shaped parts of the breast pump that fit over the nipple and areola, come in various sizes. It's crucial for comfort and efficiency to use the correct flange size. Using the wrong size can lead to discomfort, decreased milk supply, and inefficient pumping. 

  7. Frequency Matters: The frequency of breast pumping can affect milk production. Pumping too infrequently may result in reduced milk supply, while pumping too frequently can lead to oversupply. The ideal frequency varies from person to person, but it's generally recommended to pump as often as the baby would feed. The removal of milk is key for breast milk production, and remember, no lactation cookies or supplements can replace frequent milk removal!

  8. Breast Pumping and Employment: In some countries, laws exist to support breastfeeding mothers who return to work. Employers may be required to provide a private space and break time for employees to express milk. This helps support breastfeeding mothers in maintaining their milk supply while working. In the United States, PUMP Act has been signed into law by President Biden in 2022. Under the PUMP Act, most nursing employees have the right to reasonable break time and a place, other than a bathroom, that is shielded from view and free from intrusion to express breast milk while at work. This right is available for up to one year after the child’s birth.

  9. Exclusive Pumping: Some lactating parents exclusively pump breast milk without direct breastfeeding. This approach allows others, such as partners or caregivers, to participate in feeding while still providing the benefits of breast milk. It also offers more freedom and flexibility to the lactating parent. However, most families settle down for a routine that includes a combination of pumping and nursing. There are wonderful exclusive pumpers on social media and Kristen (@bemybreastfriend) is my absolute favorite! She's fun, knowledgeable and always keeps it real.

  10. Storage and Thawing Guidelines: Expressed breast milk can be stored in the refrigerator or freezer. It's important to follow guidelines for proper storage times and temperatures. When thawing frozen breast milk, it should be done gradually in the refrigerator or under warm running water to preserve its nutritional quality. Mixing 


How are YOU celebrating your pumping journey today?


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