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When should I start pumping to return to work?

Posted by on Jun. 17, 2013 at 1:25 PM
  • 8 Replies

I am 1 week into my 6 week maternity leave, DD is 9 days old, and have been trying to find some kind of guidline to when I should start pumping to get a stash set up and how much to try to have on hand. I work varying hours between quick 4 hour shifts and as long as 9 hours, 3-6 days a week. But still "part time" so rarely more than 36 hours a week.

I am wondering what kind routine I should be getting into and when to start pumping to prepare for returning to work. Plus husband has voiced his opinion that he is feeling left out with helping to feed since I haven't started pumping yet (Though that is a whole 'nother can of worms with him "wanting to help" and him actually doing anything TO help). I have a Medela Pump In Style, should I also pick up a manual one for around the house use when hubby wants to feed?

Any tips and tricks or pointers in where to look for such information would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance. :)

by on Jun. 17, 2013 at 1:25 PM
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gdiamante
by Gina on Jun. 17, 2013 at 3:31 PM


Quoting Jujikins:

I am 1 week into my 6 week maternity leave, DD is 9 days old, and have been trying to find some kind of guidline to when I should start pumping to get a stash set up

Don't worry about a stash. Really. Don't. If you have enough for 1 - 1.25 ounces per hour of your first shift, that's a big enough stash. 

Big stashes encourage overfeeding which can be deadly to supply.

and how much to try to have on hand. I work varying hours between quick 4 hour shifts

For those days you need 4 - 4.5 ounces total. If you nurse right before you leave and the instant you get home,. you'll likely need nothing at all.

and as long as 9 hours, 3-6 days a week.

For those days you'll need 9-11 ounces. And keep your servings to about three ounces. The bottle should be fed SLOWLY.. bottle helf paraleel to the floor, with a burp after every ounce. Slowest flow nipple. All these instructions are FORVER instructions; they will never change.

But still "part time" so rarely more than 36 hours a week.

Pretty easy. I worked 60 hour weeks, and went back to work with one day's feeding in the fridge!

I am wondering what kind routine I should be getting into and when to start pumping to prepare for returning to work.

Pump one side while nursing the other during the first morning feeding. No it doesn't take anything away from the baby.

Plus husband has voiced his opinion that he is feeling left out with helping to feed

Feeding is the single most boring thing a dad can do, you know. Baby pays no attention to the bottle giver. Baby is zonked. **grin** If dad wants to be an active participant, then he needs to be Master of the Bath and Duke of the Diapers. Baby pays attention to him during those times. (My husband fed ONCE. Couldn't see what all the excitement was about. Never did it again till solids were introduced.)

since I haven't started pumping yet (Though that is a whole 'nother can of worms with him "wanting to help" and him actually doing anything TO help). I have a Medela Pump In Style, should I also pick up a manual one for around the house use when hubby wants to feed?

If you are home, hubby doesn't feed. This is supply protection. Trust me on this. You can hand baby and bottle to hubby to go out for a while. Indeed, that's a good idea on a regular basis just so hubby indertands why you don't have time to get anything done. (I did that to mine. Again, just once. He never again asked what I did all day during my leave!)

Any tips and tricks or pointers in where to look for such information would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance. :)

"Working Mother Nursing Mother" is an excellent book for your needs.
 

aehanrahan
by Group Admin - Amy on Jun. 17, 2013 at 3:28 PM
You can start to pump at any time. Right now, pumping is to develop your pump response, not to store milk. You only need enough for the first day back and extra for emergencies or if you spill some or leave some out too long, etc. The need is about 2-3 ounces every 2-3 hours and it is best to only give bottles when you're not there. For your 4 hour days, nurse when you leave, give 2--2 1/2 ounces after 2 hours, and nurse as soon as you return. For your 9 hour days, three to four bottles every 2-3 hours should be perfect.
shortyali
by Alicia on Jun. 17, 2013 at 1:43 PM
I would start to pump just once a day about a week before you go back and save it. You only need 1-1.25 ozs per hour your gone, given in bottles around 3ozs every 2.5-3 hours. For you, when away from baby aim to pump every 2-3 hours. Go to kellymom.com and look up how to bottle feed a breastfed baby and print it out for whom ever is watching baby while your at work.
My DH hates feeding our babies. He says its too boring. He would rather play and bathe. Those are fun.
MamaToCollin
by Bronze Member on Jun. 17, 2013 at 1:43 PM
1 mom liked this

Someone else can be more informative on when to start pumping before going back to work, but pumping for your husband to feed the baby is double the work for you.  First you have to pump for him to give the bottle, then you have to pump for that missed feeding.  So much easier to put baby to breast.  Dad can help (or should help lol) with other things like changing the diaper, rocking, singing a song, etc.

shortyali
by Alicia on Jun. 17, 2013 at 1:43 PM
I would start to pump just once a day about a week before you go back and save it. You only need 1-1.25 ozs per hour your gone, given in bottles around 3ozs every 2.5-3 hours. For you, when away from baby aim to pump every 2-3 hours. Go to kellymom.com and look up how to bottle feed a breastfed baby and print it out for whom ever is watching baby while your at work.
My DH hates feeding our babies. He says its too boring. He would rather play and bathe. Those are fun.
aehanrahan
by Group Admin - Amy on Jun. 17, 2013 at 3:28 PM
You can start to pump at any time. Right now, pumping is to develop your pump response, not to store milk. You only need enough for the first day back and extra for emergencies or if you spill some or leave some out too long, etc. The need is about 2-3 ounces every 2-3 hours and it is best to only give bottles when you're not there. For your 4 hour days, nurse when you leave, give 2--2 1/2 ounces after 2 hours, and nurse as soon as you return. For your 9 hour days, three to four bottles every 2-3 hours should be perfect.
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gdiamante
by Gina on Jun. 17, 2013 at 3:31 PM


Quoting Jujikins:

I am 1 week into my 6 week maternity leave, DD is 9 days old, and have been trying to find some kind of guidline to when I should start pumping to get a stash set up

Don't worry about a stash. Really. Don't. If you have enough for 1 - 1.25 ounces per hour of your first shift, that's a big enough stash. 

Big stashes encourage overfeeding which can be deadly to supply.

and how much to try to have on hand. I work varying hours between quick 4 hour shifts

For those days you need 4 - 4.5 ounces total. If you nurse right before you leave and the instant you get home,. you'll likely need nothing at all.

and as long as 9 hours, 3-6 days a week.

For those days you'll need 9-11 ounces. And keep your servings to about three ounces. The bottle should be fed SLOWLY.. bottle helf paraleel to the floor, with a burp after every ounce. Slowest flow nipple. All these instructions are FORVER instructions; they will never change.

But still "part time" so rarely more than 36 hours a week.

Pretty easy. I worked 60 hour weeks, and went back to work with one day's feeding in the fridge!

I am wondering what kind routine I should be getting into and when to start pumping to prepare for returning to work.

Pump one side while nursing the other during the first morning feeding. No it doesn't take anything away from the baby.

Plus husband has voiced his opinion that he is feeling left out with helping to feed

Feeding is the single most boring thing a dad can do, you know. Baby pays no attention to the bottle giver. Baby is zonked. **grin** If dad wants to be an active participant, then he needs to be Master of the Bath and Duke of the Diapers. Baby pays attention to him during those times. (My husband fed ONCE. Couldn't see what all the excitement was about. Never did it again till solids were introduced.)

since I haven't started pumping yet (Though that is a whole 'nother can of worms with him "wanting to help" and him actually doing anything TO help). I have a Medela Pump In Style, should I also pick up a manual one for around the house use when hubby wants to feed?

If you are home, hubby doesn't feed. This is supply protection. Trust me on this. You can hand baby and bottle to hubby to go out for a while. Indeed, that's a good idea on a regular basis just so hubby indertands why you don't have time to get anything done. (I did that to mine. Again, just once. He never again asked what I did all day during my leave!)

Any tips and tricks or pointers in where to look for such information would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance. :)

"Working Mother Nursing Mother" is an excellent book for your needs.
 

tabi_cat1023
by Group Admin -Tabitha on Jun. 17, 2013 at 4:11 PM
I would start pumping once a day now..first thing in the morning just so your body knows how to respond to the pump. I did this once a day from early on and had the best successful. Hubby can do everything BUT feed, since you will already be missing feeds its a problem or bottles to be given when you can nurse. Tell hubby he needs to find HIS thing with her. He can change, bathe, rock, dance, sing etc with baby. My hubby would lay on the couch skin to skin in the evening before bed and at age 3 my son STILL loves this time with daddy.
kayleesmom42328
by Member on Jun. 17, 2013 at 4:29 PM
I would start now! Pump at least once a day. If baby doesn't finish on a side pump the rest. In no time you'll have a good stash built up.
As for dh let him give dd baths, rock her when she doesn't need fed. My dh used to do night time diaper changes & rocking when our dd's didn't need to nurse. He loved just rockin them, laying on the floor during tummy time, bath time. Once they were breast feeding good, after a couple weeks, he started giving them a bottle at night so I could sleep. They had no problem with nipple confusion.
Dh will find his own thing with baby.
Jujikins
by on Jun. 17, 2013 at 5:24 PM

Thank you for the responses and the tips. I will have to check out that book as well, I've been going a little crazy wondering how I was going to manage to balance work and home.

And I will sit and talk with hubby about the him feeding thing, you all bring up a good point that he should understand with the supply protection, as gdiamante had put it. I'm sure he will understand. 

Owl_Feather
by on Jun. 17, 2013 at 5:32 PM

 pump while you nurse. newborns usually nurse every 2 hours so if you are working an 8 hour shift, try to have about 6 oz ready. Then while at work, pump during the breaks and on the way home for the next day! But dont worry about pumping just to store. you wont get much out at 9 days post partum! If you are engorged and baby isnt hungry, pump to relieve yourself. your supply will be good and ready by the time you go back to work. congrats hun :)

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