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Device Helps Mom Feed Her Baby While Pumping

Photograph by Twenty20

Breastfeeding is tricky business. From latching problems to cracked nipples, engorgement and plugged ducts, the list of challenges a new mother faces can be extensive and truly painful. Even so, many breastfeeding moms agree that it’s worth every agonizing moment—unless, of course, your baby refuses to latch.

For some women, pumping and storing breast milk is the only solution, but sterilizing bottles every two to three hours and waiting to feed your baby until you finish pumping can be brutal, especially when your little one is screaming for something to eat.

Sound familiar? Well, get ready to catch up on some much-needed sleep because one company is about to save you a whole lot of time (and maybe a few headaches).

LacTeck’s Pump2Baby bottle ($14.99) allows a mother to pump milk directly to her baby without having to stop what she’s doing. That’s right, no more waiting to finish pumping or pulling over on the side of the road to feed your baby because this clever device lets you pump and feed at the exact same time.

Katherine Hornbostel, an engineering professor at the University of Pittsburgh and inventor of the Pump2Baby bottle, says the bottles are designed to mimic the nursing experience, enhance bonding and support twin or pace feeding. Best of all, each "anti-colic,” dishwasher-safe, BPA-free bottle features a one-way valve to keep leftover breast milk from spoiling.

When her twin sons, Nick and Ben, had trouble latching, Hornbostel remembers thinking, “There must be a better way to feed my babies while pumping!”

Hornbostel told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that she started cutting corners off plastic milk collection bags to see how the milk would drain while on maternity leave with her third child. When that didn’t work, she ordered valves on Amazon and began piecing together "random nipples" with SuperGlue.

Once she had a workable model, Hornbostel teamed up Juan Chen, LacTeck founder and inventor of the BabyMotion Flange ($19.99), to license her Pump2Baby bottle.

Chan, who also pumped exclusively, recalled what happened to her after an 18-hour international flight turned into a pumping nightmare.

"My breasts were so engorged and painful that the only thing I wanted to do was to run off the plane, jump into the first cab I saw, get to the hotel and finally pump," she wrote on the LakTeck website. “But oh no, the moment I plugged the pump in, it short-circuited, and the whole room went completely dark."

It turns out the breast pump was unable to handle the higher voltage in another country. After waiting 30 minutes in the dark for a technician to arrive—crying because her breasts felt like they were going to explode—Chen was forced to express each breast, by hand, for “two excruciating hours.”

Now, thanks to LacTeck’s Pump2Baby bottle and BabyMotion Flange, these two mompreneurs hope to prevent future mothers (and babies) from ever going through that kind of pain again.

Worried you’ll have to reinvest in a brand new pump? Don’t be. Medela pumps are compatible with the Pump2Baby bottle. Those using Spectra, however, will need to purchase a Maymom baby-bottle thread-changer to make the bottles work. Either way, it’s a win-win for breastfeeding moms on the go—at least that’s what beta testers have been saying on their website.

“I never felt a bond so strong with my baby while feeding him,” wrote one mom. “This goes beyond facilitating the feeding process. This goes deeper. My son enjoyed it! I enjoyed it, I can't wait for our next feeding. Thank you for your pure brilliance!”

Another writes, “I absolutely love this product! It's a must for all pumping mothers.”

So, when and where can you get your hands on this device?

While the Pump2Baby bottles and BabyMotion Flange are expected to arrive this month, they are currently accepting pre-orders on the LacTeck website.

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