Breastfeeding

Not pumping enough!

How can I go about increasing how much I'm able to pump? I'm using a manual pump after not having much success with the medela pump in style. I'm getting 6 oz with 5 pumping sessions at 10 min each side. I work full time so with that output I am not able to keep up and have had to start supplementing. I realize that this is a downward spiral but I have to feed her.

She is 9 weeks old.

 Am I doomed?

 

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Re: Not pumping enough!

  • Drink lots of water and make sure you are eating too! Also look into supplements like fenugreek or mothers milk.

    Go back to the electric pump, look at pictures or videos of your LO while pumping. Also, unless your work schedule doesn't allow I'd try longer pumping sessions. Try to pump for 15to 20 minutes 3 times instead of 5 10min sessions. I get a 2nd letdown between 15 and 20 min as do a lot of others.
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  • I think you'll get a lot more output if you use a double electric pump.  You can get a handfree bra, hook it up, and pump for 15 minutes, every 3 hours.  Ditto pp on drinking a ton of water and looking at pictures of your baby while you pump in the beginning.  Once your supply is really established, you should be able to just relax and do other things while you pump.
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  • So, should I try the pump in style again or suck it up and purchase a new pump. The in style is a double btw.

     I'm not sure I can justify  the expense of a new pump if I can not get my supply up. I know that sounds harsh and selfish but it is what it is. Formula is expensive if we are going to end up there anyway.

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  • What do you think was wrong with the PISA?  If it's just that you weren't getting enough ounces, I would think it's more to do with your production than the pump itself.  It's a pretty strong pump, it should help you produce more than a hand pump would.
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  • I would not get very much out. My let down seems a lot stronger with the manual. I have not tried since about 6 wks pp so maybe I need to give it another go.
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  • I've been where you're at, but I was able to fix the problem before having to supplement with formula. If water, oatmeal, ect. doesn't work- try Fenugreek. It has certainly helped boost my supply and I'd recommend it to every mother who has milk supply issues.
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  • I would try the PISA again, and def. pump for at least 20 minutes each session. 

    I need to have a hands-free bra that holds the flanges tight to me in order to produce much for the pump - the holds in an old sports bra works way better for me than the commerical one I have.  Also make sure your flanges are the right size.

    But I do get better milk expression with my Hygeia, because the speeds on the PISA are not ideal for me, and I can adjust the Hygeia individually.  I use it at work and the PISA at home. 

    Fenugreek is another option, and looking at baby really helps with my letdown.(pictures, videos).

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  • Thanks everyone for the suggestions! I went during lunch and purchased fenugreek and mothers milk in the capsular form and I am going to give the electric pump another try. Hopefully this will give me a boost!

    Thanks again!

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  • I've heard calcium magnesium and zinc vitamins really help boost your supply. It was recommended by an LC. Maybe try that!
  • image peanut201b:

    So, should I try the pump in style again or suck it up and purchase a new pump. The in style is a double btw.

     I'm not sure I can justify  the expense of a new pump if I can not get my supply up. I know that sounds harsh and selfish but it is what it is. Formula is expensive if we are going to end up there anyway.

    That is the pump that i have and i love it. Make sure you have the correct size flanges ( they should not be rubbing the sides) and make sure that the tubbing is on securely.

    Bring a picture, bring a piece of clothing, put videos of baby on your phone and watch baby while you pump.

    I would pump for at least 20-30 mins to make sure you are empty and getting as many let downs as you can.

    That first one in the morning is the best. i would pump about an hour after he ate the first time in the morning and would get lots

    Drink lots of water. eat lots of food.

    and nurse when you are home so that your supply ups when baby is having a growth spurt.

    GOOD LUCK

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  • also with that pump, don't push the button till after you have a let down
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  • My health insurance covered the cost of visiting a lactation consultant and a hospital grade breast pump rental. I would definitely contact a lactation consultant in your area, mine was a huge help! The hands free bra idea is a great idea too. It makes it so much easier. For the best milk supply possible, you really need to be pumping both breasts at the same time with an electric pump for 15 minutes. Pump every 3 to 4 hours overnight as well. Herbs have helped me increase production as well. There is a really good tincture at http://www.breastfeedingherbs.com for moms to increase supply. You want to make sure to use herbs daily as directed to help.
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