Need Tips Before Starting Daycare — The Bump

Need Tips Before Starting Daycare

I'm a FTM, and my daughter will be starting daycare in 2 weeks, when she's 12 weeks old.

I've been breastfeeding, and she's been getting on average one bottle (about 4 oz usually) of pumped milk per day from my husband in the evenings. I've been pumping daily and have been able to build up a small supply in the freezer. I also hope to keep being able to pump enough while I'm at work to avoid needing to supplement with formula, but I don't yet know how much is "enough". 

She's also not really on any sort of feeding schedule, since I feed her on demand. Some days, she'll go 3 hours between feedings, other times, only an hour and a half. 

Long story short, my questions are:

1. How do I make a best guess about how much milk to send with to daycare each day, since I'm not sure how much she's actually eating when on the breast? Should I also get formula, just in case she goes through all of the breast milk? 

2. Should I try to get her on a schedule these next 2 weeks, or just keep feeding her on demand? 

I'm having nightmares about her screaming all day at daycare when she doesn't get enough to eat!

Re: Need Tips Before Starting Daycare

  • As far as schedule, see what your daycare says.  Mine still feeds on demand (doesn't so on schedule either) but I told her to expect every 3 hours or so.  Before we started I asked if we should try to get on a schedule and my provider said it wasn't a big deal to her. 

    I leave 3 bottles 4oz each.  I was very nervous on how much to leave just like you.  Realistically I knew she wouldn't do more than 3 bottles and I've never seen her drink more than 4 oz from a bottle in one feeding (she's EBF and might eat more sometimes when she nurses but I can't measure that and she doesn't like bottles very much but will take them)

    To give me peace of mind I asked my daycare about leaving some frozen milk there.  That way if she ever has a super hungry day, or if I had an unforeseen delay picking up, I know there is a backup supply and no formula needed.

    If you have a good freezer supply, I recommend leaving some frozen as backup at daycare.  Try to stay ahead of demand by pumping at night (I pump every night 3 hours after she goes to bed) so you don't feel pressure to pump as much as she eats.  Pumping at work might not produce as 
    much especially if you are stressed.  Supplementing with formula is always an option too if your freezer supply gets low.  It will probably work out better than you think! 
  • At the beginning, I just left WAY more than I thought she'd need at daycare.  After a few weeks, when I knew what sally drink in a day, I would leave that plus one extra bottle in case of emergency.  At work, I tried to pump every 3 hours throughout the day, until I was empty.
    Me: 37 DH: 37
    Married 5-31-14
    DD1 born 6-21-15
    DD2 born 6-11-17
    DS born 9-5-18

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