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Back to work and Pumping...Advice please :(

  1. lilyofthewest

    pear / 1697 posts

    @Mrs D: I've always gotten more in my morning sessions than my afternoon or evening ones for the same amount of pump time. So, the fact that you got a half ounce more in the afternoon is really promising! I'd try going for 25-30 minutes in your morning session tomorrow and seeing how it goes before declaring it a bust.

  2. mfa_lady

    pomegranate / 3921 posts

    @Mrs D: Sometimes it takes a while for your body to get used to the pumping schedule! If you can manage it, I'd try sticking to the 30-minute pumping sessions for a week or so. In a perfect world, your body would get used to the "demand" during those times" and start producing more milk. I know that's so hard when you're not seeing the reward right away, but it's worth a shot!

  3. kiddosc

    grapefruit / 4278 posts

    @Mrs D: Did you notice if you had a second letdown in that extra time? The extra time doesn't do you much good if you don't get a letdown. That took some "practice" for me. My body almost had learn that I was waiting for a second letdown. It took longer for that to come at first, but eventually it didn't take as long.

  4. catomd00

    grapefruit / 4418 posts

    When I went back to wrk with DD, the first few weeks I had to pump in the morning before work and at night again to get enough. After a few weeks though I could get the full 12-15 oz in 3 sessions at work.

  5. mrswin

    nectarine / 2433 posts

    @Mrs D: I agree with the other ladies 0.5 oz at an afternoon pumping session is great! Give it some time and try no to stress about it too much.

    Also Kellymom is an awesome resource and has good information on pumping. One thing she suggests is that you only send what you pump the next day with the understanding that your baby will just nurse more when you are together to make up for it. This is obviously only if you are just a couple ounces short.

    Last thing but just like you and I the baby won't necessarily eat the same amount at each feeding. She may get a really good feed in first thing in the morning when you nurse and then not need as much at 10am ish.

    Any milk you pump for your little one is great! It is so tough going back to work

  6. pastemoo

    cantaloupe / 6146 posts

    @Mrs D: w hat pump do you have? What size flanges? Have you met with a lactstion consultant about pumping? And also there isn't a lot of milk in a single session. You're going great

  7. Kemma

    grapefruit / 4291 posts

    Have you tried hand expressing to finish off your pump session? I have heard that some women can get an extra ounce or so with hand expression!

  8. irene

    nectarine / 2964 posts

    I didn't read the other's response but here is what I think:

    1. 1500 calories is what I eat WITHOUT BREASTFEEDING, and I am between 105-110 lbs! Wow! Aren't you hungry? You need to eat more to make more milk. I was constantly hungry and ate nonstop when I was breastfeeding.

    2. Stress with first day of work and the big change of leaving your baby. When I first returned to work I went crazy within the first few days/weeks, drinking crazy amount of water and worry about pumping and ended up went to the ER. So in a way 3 oz is "normal" for the situation you are in right now.

    3. Back then I think I got 6-7 oz at 7am (if I pump not nurse), 5-6 oz at 10am, 5 oz at lunch time, and 3-5 oz at 3pm. So it decreases as the day goes.

    4. Did you say you pump only 1 time and got 3 oz? I think you should plan on pumping 3 times a day down the road, 15-20 min each time. Have your baby's photo with you and look at it when you pump....

    5. try to relax when you pump. Find a time/location that you will not stress out. Milk is not going to come out if you get stress out. Easy to say hard to do but that's science.

    6. Have you tried lactation cookies? Those things make me pump 8 oz a session!

    7. Are you using a double electric pump?

    8. If you REALLY want to up the volume, add one extra pumping session somewhere during the day.... it can be after work, even an hour after you nurse your baby to sleep at night. It will really up your volume overall and it helps build up a stash. I used to pump at around 8:30pm (I remember my baby slept through from 6:30pm to at least 10:30pm... and later on he sleeps through till 2am) for months, and my freezer was filled with milk because of that.

  9. brownie

    grapefruit / 4110 posts

    I am on my second full time working baby. I only get 3 oz in a pumping session. That is all I have ever gotten. So I have to assume she doesn't get much more than that when nursing. So I nurse both kids frequently. For my son the morning nurse and pump was most successful but that was just supplemental. You should only need 1-2 oz per hour you are away from baby.

    Now the other nursing mom at my kids daycare is a freaking fountain and can fill up a bottle in no time flats. Wow! So everyone is different. I would see if baby is doing fine with what you offer.

  10. DesertDreams88

    grapefruit / 4361 posts

    If you don't have time to make lactation cookies, I found that storebought oatmeal raisin or oatmeal chocolate chip cookies did the trick for me. Maybe not as "clean" as you want, but yummy and milk producing! I would eat one or two for during each pump session, so something I looked forward to and helped me relax ( as other previous posters have mentioned.)

    I also fiddled with my settings, sometimes turning it off for a minute and turning it back on in the letdown setting. I echo other previous posters in saying breast massage really helps.

    Laatly, don't cut your pump sessions short. I made a habit of doing that too often, and over 7 weeks my daily output decreased by about 25%. I used to have a surplus of 5-6oz per day, now I have to dip into the freezer almost daily for 1-2 more oz. So even though pumping can be boring and annoying, make those minutes count!

  11. Mrs D

    grapefruit / 4545 posts

    Day 2...I'm heading to pump shortly (doing this earlier today as some of you suggested). Today I will definitely get 3 sessions in at work...

    Yesterday I got 1.5oz at 6:30am (after nursing); 3oz at 10:30am, 3.5oz at 2:30pm and 1.5oz at 10pm. So I 9oz which is about what she takes in her 2 bottles while I am at work...so we're good. I drank 125oz of water, had one beer late last night (cant hurt right?!?!) and totaled about 1700 calories.

    We'll see what I can get today. Fingers crossed!

  12. irene

    nectarine / 2964 posts

    @Mrs D: Actually why/how would you know exactly how much calories you ate... are you on a diet? Don't worry about dieting when you are breastfeeding.... I was doing the math and when I was full on pumping/breastfeeding 5-6 sessions a day (4-6 oz per session), I burn 600 calories just pumping, per day. I was stick thin, no belly, while eating like a horse. So don't worry. You need to eat more than 1700 calories..... xoxoxoxoxo best wishes....

  13. Mrs D

    grapefruit / 4545 posts

    @irene: I watch what I eat...and track my intake...I always have. Plus - I have been eating this way for the 14 weeks I have been nursing and have had no issues with her weight gain so I dont think it is all of the sudden my diet/eating habits! I know some people need to increase their intake - but for me it seems I do fine on lower calories...plus - I eat when I am hungry...I certainly dont starve myself...

  14. T.H.O.U.

    wonderful clementine / 24134 posts

    @Mrs D: There also could be a chance that you just have a higher fat content BM with less ounces. If you have been eating and nursing like that for 14 weeks and things are going fine, I think your pumping output is still in the range of normal. So I would try not to stress. The lower ounces may be normal for you.

  15. DenverMom

    cherry / 196 posts

    @Mrs D: I think you've received great advice above. I wanted to add that my pumping output did not regulate until a month or so after starting back at work. So don't stress too much about output yet.

    My daughter also woke up to three times in the middle of the night (and she still wakes 1-2 times at one year old). I would nurse her first thing in the morning, so around 6 am. Then my pumping schedule was: (1) when I get to work around 8 or 830; (2) around noon, usually right before lunch; and (3) around 330 pm. So I spaced my pumping about every three hours during the day. I would then pump again right before bed, but I dropped this session after about five months or so.

    Another "trick" that helped me was to power pump a few times. I would usually do this during the noon pumping session and do it while eating lunch and surfing the web. So I would pump 10 min on/10 min off for an hour. After a day or two of that my body got the message and my output increased.

  16. Mrs D

    grapefruit / 4545 posts

    So - I did 9:30 and 12:30...got 3.75oz and 3.25oz...going back at 3:30...

    I am thinking about trying a small bottle of formula tonight to get her to sleep through the night...that would give me an extra chance to pump overnight...plus I dont mind supplementing one bottle a day...

  17. Mrs D

    grapefruit / 4545 posts

    Just wanted to post an update - in case others find this!

    Current routine:
    5:45 - nurse
    6:45 - pump at home (3oz)
    10 - pump at work (4oz)
    2/3 - pump at work (4oz)
    5:30/6pm - pump (if LO just had a bottle at DC) or nurse
    10pm - pump (4.5oz)

    DD is 4 mos and eating as follows:
    5:45 - nurse
    10am - 4.5oz
    2pm - 4.5oz
    5/6pm - 4.5oz or nurse
    9pm - 6oz formula

    So I am getting 15.5oz each day and sending 9oz to daycare (I send a third bottle but she rarely has it). The bottle of formula is a lifesaver from both a sleeping perspective and from being able to keep up with her!


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