The CDC just released new guidelines for “How to Keep Your Breast Pump Kit Clean.” LactaMed has put together a summary to help you when it is time to clean your breast pump.
Bacteria can be introduced into your pump parts a variety of ways, so it is important to check everything before you pump. While you may not have thought about it, washing your hands before touching parts or buttons and dials is a vital part of breast pump cleaning. You should also inspect all connectors, flanges and tubing for mold or damage so you can immediately discard and replace anything that has been compromised. If you are using a shared pump, be sure to use disinfectant wipes on all surfaces before touching them.
After each use, perform thorough breast pump cleaning. The first step is to completely disassemble all parts that come in contact with your milk. Then rinse each part under running water to remove any milk that may have gotten on/in them. Place the rinsed parts into a basin only used for parts and not directly in the sink or with other dishes. Clean the parts by hand or in the dishwasher. Make sure to use soap and scrub with a designated pump brush if you wash by hand. After washing, handle parts with clean hands and allow them to air dry on sanitary surface.
Ensure all parts, brushes and basins are sterilized at least once each day that they are being used. Sanitizing parts is especially important “if your baby is less than three months old, was born prematurely, or has a weakened immune system due to illness (such as HIV) or medical treatment (such as chemotherapy for cancer).” All items can be sanitized using a microwave steam bag, a separate system designed for such use, by boiling or using a dishwasher with a sanitize setting.
Make sure all parts are completely dry before storing. If desired (using clean hands) assemble dry parts and place them inside a clean, protected area such as a cabinet. You can also use a seal-able bag or container. It is very important that all parts be completely dry before storage as moisture increases the likelihood of bacteria and mold growth.