the CDC issued new breast pump cleaning guidelines: here's what we think

“The CDC has issued new breast pump cleaning guidelines after an infant contracted a dangerous infection from contaminated pump parts,” states the widely + socially circulated article found on We’ve read it. We’ve shared it. We get it. But now we want to share a few thoughts on the seemingly controversial (among the mamahood) guidelines.

CDC, we acknowledge you. We acknowledge that you protect us and protect our babies from terrible illness -- or even worse, tragedy. We are grateful that you are constantly hard at work with our best interest in mind and at heart. We appreciate that you took the time (when we seem to have so little of that) to detail pump part wash guidelines based on best available science when nothing like this has existed for us in the past. We get it.

The feeling here, though, is that those workarounds that we’ve creatively come up with (such as stashing pump parts in the fridge between sessions) and our occasional lack of hand washing for the entire 60 seconds is NOT out of neglect. It’s not out of the notion of not caring about our precious babies or without thought of illness or what the consequences may be.

It’s all kind of out of survival, because we moms, we can’t do it all.

We may be pumping in a bathroom stall with no real option for a clean, clean up area. We may be pumping on an airplane between business men, just trying to get by without missing our babies too much on this work-related travel. We may be pumping in our car because it’s the only place available to us or trying to squeeze even just one or two pumping sessions in a day when our schedule is so full that it doesn’t technically allow the time for pumping let alone washing.

We’re doing the best we can. So can’t we just get some of the support we crave that will make this journey easier for us?  Thankfully, support is the premise of who we are here at pumpspotting – supporters, encouragers and enablers - and that is why we believe those CDC guidelines, though placing more demand on our mama lives, have come out at the perfect time.

World Breastfeeding Week is just around the corner. August 1-7 is a week dedicated to supporting sustainable breastfeeding across the globe; and, as we at pumpspotting are on a mission to support breastfeeding mothers in all their forms, and to elevate experiences so that we change places, perceptions, and ultimately the percentage of women worldwide who meet their breastfeeding goals, we want to be a leader in the WBW conversations. And you, as part of our mama tribe, should be a part of it, too.

That’s why what we feel about these guidelines is that we need to use them to our advantage. We want for every mama to take all her feelings (and maybe frustrations) based on the CDC pump part wash guidelines and let them fuel the conversations during World Breastfeeding Week to change this world that wasn’t always made for our hard-working boobs. Can we all join together over mamahood + milk, start some fresh conversations with fresh perspectives and cheer each other on? Will you join us in honor of the pump parts guidelines and all the milk-making mamas? Will you become a change maker?

Here are a few easy places to start:

  • Tell a fellow breastfeeder what she needs to hear: hey mama, you've got this.
  • Support our Kickstarter
  • Socially post your own milk making story or breastfeeding journey or even your feelings on the guidelines + tag with #putaboobonit (we'll be following it all from here, here and here.)
  • Change your social profile during WBW with this image to build awareness and provide support to ALL THE MAMAS:
wbw social profile image.jpg


We completely understand these guidelines may be tough to swallow. But, we’ve got you and know you’ve got us too. So, hang out, boobs out, ladies!

Together, we’ve got this.