You may decide to use a breast pump to express your breast milk. This may be if you need to express often, prefer using a breast pump, or find hand expression awkward or tiring. Most women will use a manual breast pump. These can be purchased from pharmacies, and are conveniently portable to take with you to work, or your place of study. There are many types of breast pumps on the market, and it can be hard to know 'which one is best'. Generally, they will all do the same thing, it is just a matter of finding one that you prefer, (with a pumping action that won't result in Repetitive Strain Injury or 'RSI'). You may want to ask the advice of your caregiver, or talk with other women about what they used.
Alternatively, if you are expressing all the time, you may choose to hire (or buy) an electric breast pump. You can do this at most chemists. If you live in Australia, your local branch of the Australian Breastfeeding Association (ABA) may be able to hire one out to you, for the time you need it. The ABA counsellor will usually show you how to use your electric pump. There are also some battery operated breast pumps on the market, which you may find a portable alternative to the larger electric pumps.
Whatever type of breast pump you choose, it is important that the pump is used correctly. Each pump should come with its own set of instructions. Unfortunately, most women aren't officially shown how to use their breast pump (unless you expressed breast milk in the hospital). Therefore, if you buy one during the pregnancy, it may be an idea to take it with you to the hospital, so that one of the midwives can show you how to assemble and use it before you go home (even though you may not need it for a few weeks). Alternatively, you can take it with you to the early childhood nurse at your baby health clinic, who should be able to take you through the use of it.
If you are sorting out the use of your breast pump on your own, it is important to: