Pumping

Alicia - posted on 12/09/2008 ( 14 moms have responded )

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I only get about 2 ounces each pumping session (one time per day), do I have to be worried about low milk supply? How can I increase?

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Alicia - posted on 12/09/2008

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Thanks for all the tips. It's a relief that I don't really have to worry about low milk supply. Lucas is 13 weeks, and by pumping we can give a bottle every couple of days which gives me a break and lets my husband share in the joy of feeding. We also then have the flexibility to have him stay with Grandma for an evening, so we can go out!

Usually I pump right after the morning feed, and I get about 2 ounces. As long as that is normal, I'll keep that up, which gives me enough for a bottle every other day, which is plenty. I just wasn't sure if that was normal...it seemed so many other ladies pumping could get way more!

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Gena - posted on 12/10/2008

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you're good girl, my baby is almost 5 months and although i don't pump very regularly, the only time i can get more than an ounce out of pumping both breasts is if he's gone more than 3 hrs. without feeding, which rarely happens! check out the book "the womanly art of breastfeeding", it has all kinds of great info to chew on!

Beth - posted on 12/10/2008

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if you're still worried about low milk supply - although it doesn't sound like you need to be - try fenugreek tea or tablets. They naturally increase milk supply :-)

Lydia - posted on 12/09/2008

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Keep doing what you're doing. =) I'm assuming you pump after your morning feed because it's when your milk supply is highest (many women's supply is highest in the morning and lower in the afternoon and evening). If you do want to up your supply, I recommend real oatmeal (not instant). My pediatrician also recommended drinking a beer immediately AFTER a nursing session - the barley helps milk production. I don't care for beer, so I swear by Old Wessex Ltd. 5 grain cereal (oatmeal) because it has oats AND barley...works wonders in 3 days, but I try to eat it every morning.

User - posted on 12/09/2008

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Every time you nurse the baby pump right after. Your milk supply will increase. Try to pump with the baby in the room. If not have a picture of the baby that you can look at. Drink LOTS of water. Good luck.

Suzanne - posted on 12/09/2008

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Alicia, if you are pumping after your child has just nursed, 2 oz or so is perfectly normal. Nothing to worry about. If you are trying to build up a stash, you may have to add more pumpings.

Debbie - posted on 12/09/2008

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Hi, I was wondering why do u need to pump? How old is your baby? these are all questions that would help in giving advise. If you don't eally need to pump, then why do it? If it is for storage, then do it later, when your supply is better. Your milk is made of foremilk and hind milk, thus foremilk contains all the nutrients and hind milk contains all the fatty milk so that is what will fill your baby. I suggest you feed your baby on one side only and then pump on the other side only, that way you will get both parts of the milk your baby needs. Feeding on one side only will increase your supply because this is letting your body know how much you need to produce. When you pump I agree with Melissa, let down is a major part of feeding. good luck!!

Melissa - posted on 12/09/2008

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From Dr. Jack Newman's "Guide to Breastfeeding" ( he is the guru of breastfeeding) "You should express after feedings at the breast, not before, since you want your baby to take as much of your milk as possible directly. Always breast compression once the baby does not nurse on his own. ..." " Some (pumps) are basically useless- in fact, they may be worse than useless because when the mother uses them and discovers se can't get any milk out, she may assume this means her milk supply is low. This is not true. There are women who are never able to use a pump or to hand-express with much success, who nevertheless exclusively breastfeed their babies successfully. A baby who is properly latched is much more efficient at getting milk from the breast than ANY pump."

Don't fret. When I first started pumping, I could only get like an 1 ounce. After about a month, I was getting approx. 3 ounces per breast. Now after 3 months I could easily pump 5 ounces per breast...HOWEVER, I usually need my baby with me. If he can't be with me, then I close my eyes and picture him feeding. Milk letdown comes from Oxytocin in the brain, you need to get the brain to release the oxytocin, so pictures of babies breastfeeding, or visualization is key.

Good luck!

Alicia - posted on 12/09/2008

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Lucas is 13 weeks now, and I've been pumping for about 2 weeks. I usually pump for about 5-10 minutes immediately after his morning feed. After about 5-7 minutes I don't really get anything more.

Angelica - posted on 12/09/2008

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Hi Alicia,
I had the same problem. Do you just breast feed the rest of the time? If so, and the baby seems fine after feeding, i'm sure you're fine! I don't know how old your little one is but if the baby is gaining weight at each of her doctor's visits, I wouldn't worry about it too. But if you would still like to increase your milk supply, for me, I had to pump a little more and just store what I didn't need...that helps b/c our bodies makes what we use. Also, it depends on your feelings toward taking herbal supplements but milk thistle and fenugreek made a noticeable difference for me.

Heather - posted on 12/09/2008

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Agree with all the moms here. Depends on how old the baby is. Make sure you're getting enough food AND water. And pump after nursing. Set an amount of time, like 10 minutes each side after nursing. Your supply should definitely go up. You could also pump in between nursing sessions. For example, if she's eating ever 4 hours, pump at 2 hours for 15 min per side (or until depleted), nurse at 4. If she's nursing more often, like every 2 hours, you could feed her from one side and pump the other side. Most importantly, deplete both sides every time!

Jovanne - posted on 12/09/2008

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You should pump immediately after the baby has fed. You need to completely empty the breasts to produce more milk. Pumping alone does not completely empty the breasts. When you are completely empty, eat A LOT! Like a steak dinner and drink a lot of water. Oatmeal and toast is a good morning meal. Another good tip, always start feeding the baby on the side that feels the LOWEST first. This way each side is completely emptied. Try feeding the baby on the same side three times in a row (no closer than 1 1/2 hrs. apart). I'm not sure the age of your baby. This is what I had to do when my daughter was 0 - 3 months to keep up my milk supply. I never had to supplement and she is a tall, large baby now at 9 months. At 0 - 3 months, my daughter had 1 -2 ounces each meal. Even now at 9 months, she eats only 4 ounces each meal. You do not have to worry about low milk supply if you baby is gaining weight, and pooping and peeing regularly. Good Luck!

Michelle - posted on 12/09/2008

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How old is your baby? I have breast fed and pumped for both my boys (4 yrs old & 1 yr old). The first month or two it was hard to get any amount but after that it got better. If your baby is only 1-2 months old, they are only drinking 2 oz a feeding anyways. I tried to pump when my baby would go longer with out a feeding (took a long nap) and then I would get a decent amount. But the more you pump (every 2-3 hrs) the more you do produce but it takes 24 hrs to kick in. I was able to pump & work for both boys.

Sarah-Joy - posted on 12/09/2008

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i pumped and my milk supply wasnt much better, but what Ive heard is the more you pump the more you make,, try pymping for 20mins eery 2-3 hours, drink lots of h2o also try hot compresses and they make Mothers Milk tea that is supposed increase your milk supply. Best of Luck!

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