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I'm due in January and want to pump my milk into bottles for my baby. I'm swarmed by all my worrisome questions and hope someone can help.
1.) how much should I pump in a day? How much will I get?
2.) How many feedings will 1 pump be good for?
3.) Is it better just to breast feed on-call?
This is all I can think about, I'm just so stressed out that I won't be doing it right and will let down my baby. Thanks!
Are you wanting to exclusively pump and not breastfeed? As a lactation consultant, I encourage you to breastfeed the baby as it's healthier for the baby and for you. I can provide you with more information if you want to on that. If it's something that you just do not want to do, I will also respect you(and not judge) for your decision. I just have to provide you with all the information first. Is there a reason you want to exclusively pump? If you are exclusively pumping, you will need a hospital grade pump and you will have to pump 8-12 times per day to build a supply. Nothing is as good or better than the baby suckling so that's why I recommend a hospital grade pump as they have the best suction. Rentals can be expensive however, generally between $60-100 per month, and they retail between $1500-$3000. That's why people rent vs buy hospital grade pumps. If you have insurance, they may cover a hospital grade pump. Let me know if you have questions about that. Some insurance companies, however, will only cover manual pumps or personal double electric pumps. The personal double electric pumps(high quality) should work fine once your milk supply is established but establishing a milk supply while exclusively pumping without a hospital grade pump is hard to do. As for the amount of milk, that will vary. In the very beginning you be pumping small amounts of colostrum and then as your mature milk comes in, it will slowly increase. A full supply is generally around 30 oz per 24 hours, but that will not be that high for the first couple of weeks because and babies don't need that much in the first week.
I was always told it's easier to pump and possibly better since that's the new norm. I'm looking to do the best for my child If breastfeeding is the best. I still have questions on that.
1. How many times a day do you feed?
2. Should I pump for when I'll be away from the baby or do formula.
I guess I'm just scared/nervous that I'm going to misstep. If that makes sense? Thanks!
Yes, that makes sense. You are entering a new territory and that can be very scary for parents. You need to breastfeed 8-12 times per day as well. Some say it's easier to pump and some believe it's easier to breastfeed. For me personally it was easier to breastfeed. I breastfed three babies and with my first I had to pump for awhile since he was sent to the NICU for a few days and they started him on formula and he had a hard time latching at first. When he was discharged I had to worry about pumping, feeding him, cleaning the pump parts and bottles and sterilizing. Not to mention making sure the milk was stored properly and heated properly for feeding. It was so time consuming and I felt it much easier to just breastfeed so I didn't have to worry about all the other stuff and once he latched I was able to stop pumping. I guess it just depends on what you mean by easier. Some think it's easier because they can pump and have someone else hold and feed the baby. If you want to exclusively breastfeed and not give formula, you can pump for when you will be away from the baby. Will you be staying home with the baby or returning to work?
I'm going to try and go back to work but will be home for a little while. Do you reccomend breast shells to draw out flat nipples? Also do I switch sides in between feedings ( 1 feeding on right and the next on left)? Thanks for all your help!
Just chiming in to say I've done both pumping and BF (only pumping out of necessity due to working full time), and BF is much easier for me. It's also better at maintaining a good supply. Exclusive pumping can be done, but it's a challenge. Personally, I'd rather BF as much as possible and then pump if/when necessary. Good luck!
Are you pumping for your little one? Planning to pump?
Have a question or need support? BTDT and have wisdom to share? Join us in the Pumping Mommies board!
I do not recommend shells to draw out flat nipples. When I say shells, I mean the hard plastic domes that you put in our bra, not the nipple shields which lay directly over your nipple while the baby breastfeeds. Sometimes people get these two things confused. There is no evidence that the shells work to draw out nipples. I don't think they will hurt any if you use them, but I do think it's a waste of money. I would recommend to pump for 30 seconds or so right before you latch the baby on or roll the nipple like a pencil. They also sell nipple everters but these techniques do the same thing. As far as switching sides, I recommend nursing baby on one side until they are finished or fall asleep(after active sucking and swallowing has been observed for more than 5 minutes), then you should burp the baby and offer the second side. If they take it, great, and if not, that's okay too, but either way, you will offer that second side at the next feeding.