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breastfeeding, pumping and supply...

Forum: Breastfeeding


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April 15th, 2008, 07:03 PM
The Jen's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Maine
Posts: 4,608
Hello! My name is Jen and my daughter Isabelle is 7weeks old. I go back to work in about a month and am trying to get a freezer stock built up. I also posted this elsewhere to see what I can get for feedback/help. Thank you!!

So tonight I fed Isabelle on the left side, then maybe about 30-45 minutes later was getting ready to feed her on the right (she cluster feeds at night before bed) and decided to pump the left while feeding on the right. Well I only got 1/2oz out?!?!?! What is the deal here...I mean, I know that she is better than the pump, and can get more out, but I thought I would have gotten more than that. 1/2oz isn't even worth using a freezer bag for. I am going to try to pump more later...but still. I also tried pumping on the right after she was done eating and got pretty much nothing. I mean, I must be making what she needs because she is gaining weight, having enough wet and dirty diapers each day, and seems satisfied after feeding, although sometimes she eats from both sides instead of just one.

I guess my question is...what can I do to increase my supply so that I can get a good freezer stock? I have to go back to work in about a month..and as of right now only have about 20-30oz in the freezer...that isn't going to get us very far.

Also, can anyone tell me what the rules are for adding milk to previously pumped milk? Like can you add additional to already refrigerated or frozen milk? Or are you better off to store it in another bag?
Jen, wife to Jon, mommy to Isabelle, Nikolas, and Charlotte

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April 16th, 2008, 06:45 AM
Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Illinois
Posts: 9,100
What worked for me is to pump after her first nursing session in the morning. I've always been able to get more in the mornings and I think that is pretty common. You might not get much at first but if you keep pumping your output should increase. If you haven't been pumping long your body might not be used to letting down for a pump, this should also improve with time. Also try to relax while pumping and not worry about how much you are getting. I have found when that when I distract myself I get more because I'm not thinking so much about it.

As far as adding milk from different pumping sessions I believe you can add them together within 24 hours and they should be at the same temp (both refrigerated). This is what I follow at least. Then you can freeze after that. Good Luck!!
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April 16th, 2008, 11:30 AM
Posts: n/a
I agree pumping in the morning should yeild more and what I do now is pump the same side she has finished eating from then maybe just a little from the other side since that is the side she will nurse from at the next feeding.

As for combining I put all the milk in the fridge then combine it at the end of the day into a freezer bag.

Also, don't forget, once you are at work you will be pumping so you will not need a ton of milk saved up, probably just enough to get you through a few days.
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April 16th, 2008, 12:46 PM
LaLa's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 11,576
Ditto the others on morning pumping

Also, keep in mind - evenings are almost always going to yield less & they cluster feed usually at night, which doesnt lend itself to really pumping a lot. Is this a recent occurance that youre getting less? Were you pumping at night before?

It doesnt sound like its a problem, and with all women almost - theyll pump great some days & not so great the other days & its no indication of supply.

And just for the record - 20 - 30 ozs is GREAT for a freezer stash. I've been pumping/working for nearly 18 months (went back PT by 3 months & FT by 6 months), and NEVER had that big of a freezer stash lol. I have always pumped one day & thats what we used for the next day. If I fell short one day, Id nurse her on my lunch break or add a pumping session at night or in the morning. We never had to supplement with formula though! We always seemed to make do

And as for combining milk - what I usually did was stored it room temperature for a few hours (it can go up to 10 hours at room temperature), and then combine them all before putting htem in the fridge. I never stored more than 2 ozs in a bag, b/c she usually took milk in 2 oz increments initially, then 4 ozs. Shes never taken more than 5 ozs at a time.

Check out this link :

You can also refrigerate them, and then combine them all at the end of the day (I just stored them in the bottles that I was pumping into until I combined them, then put them in 2 oz bags at the end of the day when Id fridge them).

As long as theyre the same temp you can combine. Just dont add warm milk to cold milk or vice versa



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April 17th, 2008, 10:06 AM
Momofapeanut's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 2,715
I just started back to work last week with a 2 month old at home. I had about 20-30 oz stored in the freezer. I would pump at night about an hour or two after I put her down for the night and I'd usually get a combined 4oz - which was my goal because that seemed to be what she was eating at one feeding.

I'm gone for an 8 hour day +2 hour commute and she only takes 12 oz. while I'm gone and I pump 16-18 oz. at work. We use the previous day's pumped milk and usually end up storing some extra in the freezer, so right now my stock is growing. So in my experience, I wouldn't stock up too much!

I pump into either bags or bottles and store in 4-6oz increments. I usually don't have to combine at all, I get 4-6 per breast per pumping session.
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