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Breastfeeding Moms Breastfeeding Moms

good idea?

Posted by on May. 8, 2012 at 11:08 PM
  • 13 Replies

I wanna increase my milk supply, I know I make enough for my daughter just not enough to pump... I am starting work soon, I been told to try fenugreek and I order a supply but then someone said take it with blessed thistle... Does that work? How much should I take? Can I take just blessed thistle until I get the fenugreek?

by on May. 8, 2012 at 11:08 PM
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by on May. 8, 2012 at 11:09 PM


by on May. 8, 2012 at 11:09 PM
Umm what?! I don't see anything:/
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
by on May. 8, 2012 at 11:11 PM

Sorry damn thing move while I was about to type and made me hit post.. -.-

by on May. 8, 2012 at 11:14 PM


Quoting cpflum08:

Umm what?! I don't see anything:/

by Ruby Member on May. 8, 2012 at 11:18 PM

The first step is to start pumping, and learn how to pump, and practice, to stimulate your supply. That will be much more effective than taking herbs.

The other important factor is the quality of your pump. All the herbs in the world will do nothing if you have a low quality pump.

Learn how to express your milk: Preparing for your return to work or school can begin by learning to express your milk. You can express milk by hand, with a breast pump, or by using a combination of the two. Learning how to remove milk without your baby requires both developing your own expression technique and conditioning your milk ejection reflex (MER) or “let down” to respond to it. Most mothers experience MER in response to the sensation of baby sucking as well as other stimuli like the sound of a baby crying. If you are having trouble eliciting MER during expression, try visualizing your baby at the breast or listening to a recording of your baby's cry. Looking at pictures of your baby or smelling your baby's clothes or a blanket may also be helpful. If you have a video feature on your phone, try recording your baby breastfeeding so you can play it back while expressing. One study indicated that mothers who replicated their babies’ sucking patterns by adjusting the cycle settings on their pumps expressed more milk (Meier, et al, 2012).  Warming the breast before expressing and gentle breast massage (working from the armpit towards the nipple with a soft kneading touch or in a circular motion with flat fingers) has been effective at increasing the amounts of milk removed during expression, too (Jones, Dimmock & Spencer, 2001). Combining hand expression and massage with a pumping routine has been shown to assist with increasing milk production and output (Morton, Hall & Wong, 2009).

What type of pump should I use?

A high-quality, full-size, double-electric pump is recommended for a mom who is going to be expressing milk every day. A pump that is made by a company specializing in making breastfeeding equipment  will be of higher quality than less expensive pumps made by a company specializing in making bottle-feeding equipment. A breast pump is an item for which the old adage, “You get what you pay for,” rings true. Another option for many mothers is renting a multiple-user pump, from a trusted source such as a Hospital, WIC, or local IBCLC.

When should I start expressing milk?

Begin preparing for separation by taking some time to enjoy and get to know your baby! Many sources recommend that it is ideal to begin expressing milk after breastfeeding is well established. Spending the first 4-6 weeks breastfeeding exclusively is the best way to establish milk production. Wait until after that time to begin to focus on expressing milk in preparation for your return to work. If your maternity leave is for a duration of less than six weeks, it may be effective to begin expressing milk two weeks prior to the end of your leave.

How often should I express milk?

Once a day is usually plenty to start. Most moms find they are able to express the most milk in the morning hours. You can nurse your baby on one side and express milk on the other side or express both sides about one hour after baby’s first morning feeding. Don’t worry if you don’t get very much milk at first. It takes practice, and your body needs to “learn” to make milk for that extra “feeding.” Any milk collected during these practice sessions can be stored in the freezer.
by on May. 8, 2012 at 11:18 PM
Hmmm I'm not to sure. I have taken fenugreek before, with eating oatmeal every morning and lots of water. That's all I needed for my milk boost.

Quoting Scarlette12:


Quoting cpflum08:

Umm what?! I don't see anything:/

Posted on CafeMom Mobile
by on May. 8, 2012 at 11:31 PM

I've been pumping since she was a week old, oddly sound of her crying I never have a let down. :/ Also have a ameda pump... I love it, it works well... Just can't seem to get this pumping down, she nurses on me 24/7 and I pump some in the morning.. I thought taking some herbs would help a bit to get where I need.. I start working tomorrow by away..

Oh how much milk should I be pumping within a day? That's inculding the baby nursing...

by Ruby Member on May. 8, 2012 at 11:49 PM

Quoting Scarlette12:

I've been pumping since she was a week old, oddly sound of her crying I never have a let down. :/ Also have a ameda pump... I love it, it works well... Just can't seem to get this pumping down, she nurses on me 24/7 and I pump some in the morning.. I thought taking some herbs would help a bit to get where I need.. I start working tomorrow by away..

Oh how much milk should I be pumping within a day? That's inculding the baby nursing...

How much milk will my baby need while I’m away?

Breastfed babies drink, on average, 24 to 32 ounces of milk per day (Kent et al., 2006). If you spread that amount over 24 hours it equals 1-1.25 ounces per hour. With that information in mind, plan on leaving about 1-1.25 ounces of milk per hour of separation. Most breastfed babies need no more than 2-4 ounces at each feeding (Kent et al., 2006). Breastfed babies need less milk than formula-fed babies do, and unlike with formula, the amount of breastmilk your baby needs does not increase as he grows bigger. When you return to work, your baby will need only a portion of this daily amount of milk from the care provider, because he will still be getting much of it by breastfeeding during the hours of the day and night when you are together.

Offering smaller bottles, of no more than 2-4 ounces, means there is less chance that your baby will not finish his bottle, leaving milk that will be thrown away.

How many times do I need to express milk at work?

How many times you pump at work will depend on a few factors: how long you are away from baby; how well you respond to milk expression; and your work situation. Many working moms aim for expressing milk at least every 3 hours. If you are becoming engorged between expressing times, you may need to express more frequently. Every mother has her own “magic number” and will differ in how frequently she needs to express her milk to both maintain milk production and provide enough expressed milk for her baby.

Because your goal is to express today what your baby needs tomorrow, you know you are expressing enough when you are able to pump at least the amount that your baby needs.

What if I can’t stop to express my milk as frequently as I should?

When it is challenging to find enough time to express your milk here are some time saving options:
  • You most likely do not need to wash out your pump parts every time, and that can reduce the amount of time you spend during break or during your lunch period.
  • Breastmilk can be kept at room temperature for 6-8 hours (ABM, 2004). Keep your pump parts and bottles of milk in a cool place; covering them with a cool towel will help.
  • Some mothers place all of their pump parts in the refrigerator along with their bottles of expressed milk, each time they pump. At the end of the day they take all of the parts home to wash.
  • Consider arranging your schedule so that you can arrive at work 15 minutes before you need to “clock in” and pump before you start work.
  • If you don’t have enough time to completely drain your breasts, it is still valuable to stop and express some milk, even if it is only for 5 minutes.
  • If you are driving for a during your work hours, you can consider purchasing a car adapter for your pump, along with a hands free pumping bra ( or you can make your own) link: so that you can pump hands-free. For your safety, Breastfeeding USA recommends that you pull over to express milk and that you don’t do so while driving.

How should I store the milk I express at work. Do I put it all in the freezer?

In order for your baby to get the most anti-infective properties from your milk, it is best to offer it fresh whenever possible. Freezing has been found to denature some of the antibodies and kill some of the living cells in milk (Orlando 2006) (Buckley & Charles 2006). Whether fresh or frozen, your milk provides all the nutrition your baby needs, and you can count on your milk to support your baby in all areas of growth and development.

Here is a schedule many working mothers recommend for using frozen milk. Your baby gets mostly fresh milk and the best possible nutrition and antibodies to protect from illness:
  • Pump on Monday; give to your babysitter to use on Tuesday.
  • Pump on Tuesday; use on Wednesday and so on until Friday.
  • Pump on Friday, label with the date, and freeze; put in the back of the freezer.
  • Use the oldest milk in the freezer for Monday.
  • Use your freezer stash only when you have an unusual need for extra milk, for example, when your baby is going through a growth spurt or if you spill all of your freshly pumped milk.

This system prevents the frozen milk from getting too old and needing to be thrown out. Another option would be to refrigerate Friday’s milk over the weekend and let your babysitter use it on Monday. This practice would preserve more of the antibodies in Friday’s milk but wouldn't keep your frozen milk from going out of date.

What if my baby’s caregiver says my baby needs more milk?

With bottle-feeding, there can be a tendency for the person feeding to encourage the baby to finish the bottle. Milk flows easily from a bottle nipple even when the baby is not actively sucking, and the faster flow can cause a baby to continue feeding after he is full. Caregivers may believe that baby needs more milk than he actually does. Make sure that your caregiver has the correct information about how much breastmilk a baby needs, and inderstands the difference between bottle-feeding breastmilk and non-human milk.

You can offer some tips to your baby’s caregiver on how to bottle feed in a way that supports breastfeeding:
  • Use a slow-flow soft bottle nipple that has a wide base and a shorter, round nipple (not the flatter, orthodontic kind).
  • Start by resting the tip of the nipple on the baby's upper lip and allow him to take it into his mouth himself, just as if he were nursing.
  • Keep the bottle only slightly tilted, with the baby in a more upright position, so he has to work to get the milk out. If you hold the bottle straight down, the milk will come out too fast, and he may feel overwhelmed by the flow (Kassing, 2002).
  • If your baby is refusing bottles or you prefer not to use one, there are other options available. You can try a slow flow sippy cup or spoon feeding. If you use either cup or spoon, make sure your baby is fed while sitting in an upright position, that the feeding is paced (slow), and that you do not use a sippy cup that requires that your baby bite down on the tip to release the milk. Biting during nursing is often problematic and any feeding method you chose should not encourage this behavior.

What if I’m not expressing enough milk?

Here are some tips to increase the amount of milk you are expressing:
  • Go back to the basics of learning how to express your milk 
  • Relax. Take a few deep breaths and get comfortable before you begin expressing your milk.
  • Avoid watching the bottles to see how much milk is coming out. Instead, focus on your baby. Many mothers find that watching how much milk is coming out reduces the amount they are able to express.
  • Add another session. If you are unable to express more frequently at work, another option is to express milk at home first thing in the morning.
  • Try more frequent, shorter sessions of expressing milk. Often three-20 minute sessions will yield more total milk  than two-30 minute sessions.
  • Send what you are able to  express. Remember that baby has 24 hours in the day to get all of the milk he needs. If he does not get enough in the time you are apart, he can nurse more when you are together to get the total amount he needs.
  • If you are using a pump, check your pump. Some pumps need parts replaced on a frequent basis to maintain full suction.
  • Rule out any health complications or health concerns with your healthcare team, there are valid reasons that mothers experience a dip in supply.
  • Try incorporating breast compressions when you are expressing milk to empty the breast.
  • Use some gentle massage before you express, starting in the armpit working toward the nipple in gentle circular motions.
  • Update the pictures of your baby that you are using when you are expressing. Bring some worn baby pajamas and try smelling them to help you bring  your baby into the room with you mentally.
by on May. 9, 2012 at 10:37 AM

Yes to you question.

What has helped me the best with pumping is lactation cookies. Oatmeal cookies (made with steel cut or thick cut oats) with flax seed meal and brewers yeast. If you can't get the flax seed meal or brewers yeast start with just the oatmeal cookies and add in the others when you can get them. Much tastier and easier to take than a dozen pills.

by Group Mod - Gina on May. 9, 2012 at 10:45 AM

As to pump amounts... half an ounce to two ounces per session. How much per day depends on how many sessions.

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