"Relactating?" — The Bump


Hi, I am a feb '15 ftm single mom here. I have breastfed my son and have pumped occasionally, and started supplementing at three months when I went back to work.
I will be going back to school full time on Aug 31 and working 24-28 hours a week.
I just got a super duper Medela pump all in one bag with ice packs and flange/bottle storage which is so convenient and incognito. As a grad student I have use of a private study (read: pumping) room.
So please help. My production has gone down. I am supplementing approx. 15 oz per day. How can I get away from that and move back to hopefully exclusive breast milk.
THANKS for taking the time!!

Re: "Relactating?"

  • You're doing amazing work! Pumping is really hard and you should feel really proud of anything you can give him and don't worry too much about how much you have to supplement, especially day to day. I've got a couple of tips for getting more when you're pumping. A pump is never as effective as a well nursing baby so keep in mind that your supply might not be as bad as you think.
    For boosting overall supply:
    Eat oatmeal, flax brewed yeast and take fenugreek. You can make cookies or smoothies or oatmeal.
    POWER PUMP. 20 mins on, 10 off, 10 on for an hour. Do it a few days in a row to boost supply or anytime you've gone a little bit long between pumps.
    Take a weekend with baby to nurse on demand and do lots of skin to skin. Try having lots of nursing on demand time when you're home with lots of switching side to side whenever swallowing slows.

    For pumping:
    Make sure flanges are a good size for you and that you have a hands free double pumping bra.
    Let down is connected to oxytocin. Try to relax as much as possible. Don't watch the pump (even cover it) just set a timer, I do 20 mins max. Watch a video on your phone, look at pictures or videos of baby. Anything happy and relaxing -avoid doing work.
    Try to stick to a frequent pumping schedule.
    Breast massage during pumping especially hard spots. You can also do a massage right before and a few minutes before the end if that works better.
    Good luck!
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