I have a few questions about going back to work:
1. I currently freeze pumped breastmilk in Medela BM bags. Can I heat them directly in my Avent digital bottle warmer? Or do I need to thaw first in the fridge, then transfer to a bottle and THEN warm the bottle in the bottle warmer?
2. My pediatrician said to start pumping now to get ready to go back to work (I go back in 3 weeks) and to pump about an hour after our morning feeding. I have only done this once so far, and got 3.5 oz in just a few minutes, but I am worried that my body will think that it needs to produce more milk for an extra feeding. It's fine now, but I will not be able to keep up that extra feeding to pump once I return to work. Is there a better way to pump to stock up?
3. How many ounces would you suggest I have to start my supply? I currently have 16 oz frozen, and plan to give our nanny the pumped milk from the day before to feed my daughter. Haven't tried it yet but I am assuming I would be pumping enough for her to get through the next day??? And I'm assuming I would be using the frozen milk as backup in case she needs more while I'm gone...
4. Anyone have any tips about pumping directly into BM bags? It seems like when I pump directly into them, it doesn't give me an accurate reading of how many oz I've pumped. I've been pumping into bottles or viles to get an accurate measurement, then pouring into bags to freeze. Is there a more efficient method?
Re: Pumping/Freezing/Thawing questions
1) Not sure how that warmer works, but if the bag just floats in hot water and doesn't come into contact w/ anything, I think it would be okay. And honestly? I had daycare stop warming M's milk not too long ago. It's too much of a hassle, and I like the thought that she only gets warm milk straight from the tap ;)
2) Your are right that consistently pumping an extra time will results in an "extra feeding's" worth of milk. It will even out when you go back to work. The baby is generally better at removing milk than the pump. I tend towards oversupply though, so what I had to do for a while was drop down to two pumping sessions per day at work instead of three. Now that my baby is 6.5 mos and on some solids, my supply has dipped a bit, so occasionally I pump 3 times if I need to.
3) You are correct in that you will give your nanny the milk from the day before to use the following day. You technically don't need any frozen stash, but lots of mamas like to have some for emergencies. A good ball park is a week's worth of milk.
4) I never pump into bags for the exact reason you describe. I pump into bottles, then when I come home I either a) pour into bottles for the next day (I use Playtex Drop-ins) or b) pour into storage bags to put in the freezer (if there is extra).
HTH and :welcome