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If you're a large-breasted nursing mom, you may have had some unique struggles finding nursing bras or nursing positions that are comfortable. What is often especially challenging, however, is pumping! While the basics of breastfeeding and pumping remain the same, there are some different considerations for larger breasted women who are pumping, so we thought we'd share a few tips that might be useful for these particular moms.
As with all pumping moms, you'll want to find the right sized flange. Flanges are sized to the nipple, not to the overall breast size, so you could require a small sized flange and have very large breasts. Flanges must fit correctly to pump efficiently, and an improperly sized flange can cause pain and/or skin damage. See this link to learn how to chose a flange size that fits properly and if possible, get your flanges sized by an IBCLC.
It may take a little experimentation to find the right angle to hold the flanges while pumping. Just be sure that your angle doesn't cause you to leak any milk from the underside of the flanges, and that it doesn't cause any discomfort. Many moms recommend Pumpin’Pals because they can make pumping more comfortable and efficient.
If holding your breast during pumping is not comfortable, or if it's difficult to hold the flanges in place and hold your breast up at the same time, consider a pumping bra or bustier. They will help hold the flanges in place and support the weight of your breast at the same time and may make double pumping possible. There are some excellent options made especially for larger breasted moms, and your back may thank you too!