Whether you’re going out for the evening, returning to work, or simply needing a break from nursing, most new parents use a breast pump at some time. The handy device can do much more than just fill a breast milk bottle. A breast pump can also help you keep your milk supply flowing and minimise engorgement by keeping a backlog of milk in your freezer. However, pumping breast milk can be scary for new mothers. How exactly do you go about accomplishing it? We have the answers.
How frequently should I pump?
If you want to avoid a decrease in milk production, the general rule of thumb is to pump anytime your baby is being fed from a bottle so your body receives the signal to create more milk.
Start pumping breast milk roughly twice a day if you’re going to return to work. Always pump as soon as the baby has finished breastfeeding. If you pump too soon to the next breastfeeding session, the baby will be irritated by the limited volume, resulting in a bad feeding session.
When you return to work, consider pumping breast milk every three hours. If your infant drinks three bottles while at work, pump three times when you get home. If your infant drinks four bottles while you’re away, pump four times during your work shift.
How much milk do I need to pump?
How much milk you should pump depends on your milk production as well as your baby’s age and weight. Moms often produce enough milk to satisfy their baby’s daily requirements, which average roughly a litre per day. However, it is entirely dependent on the mother. Some can only produce an additional 80 to 170 grammes on top of what they are currently making to feed babies. Others may be able to save the equivalent of what they are feeding the infant.
To ensure you obtain all of your milk, pump until your breasts feel empty and soft or until around two minutes after the last drop of milk, after your milk has fully arrived. Pumping sessions might run anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes, depending on your milk production and the type of breast pump you’re using.
How do you pump breast milk?
There are several methods for pumping breast milk. However, before using a pump, you should learn how to hand-press your milk. It is beneficial for mothers to become accustomed to expressing themselves through their hands.
Pumping breast milk can be done with either a manual pump or an electric pump, in addition to hand expression. How you pump breast milk depends on the sort of breast pump you have. Pumps range somewhat in terms of portable, single electric, double electric, hands-free, and so on. Therefore, there isn’t a single set of particular recommendations that will apply to all parents.
Remember, pumping should never be painful. If pumping breast milk hurts, there is a problem with the equipment. Either your flanges are the wrong size, or your suction level is too high. If it still aches after you’ve made the necessary modifications, see a lactation consultant and bring the pump with you so she can assist you in finding the appropriate fit.
What is the shelf life of breast milk after pumping?
The storage strategy determines how long breast milk lasts after pumping. Breast milk may be stored on the counter for up to six to eight hours, in the fridge for five days, and in a freezer with a separate door for roughly six months. Keep it in the back of the freezer rather than at the entrance, which tends to be warmer.