My son has recently increased the amount he drinks after going through his growth spurt. While I'm at work I am able to pump exactly the same or am shy about 2 ounces. Also with pumping more, it has been taking longer to pump. I work 12 hour shifts and am away from my baby about 14-15 hours. I put 3-4 times while at work. I have the medela pump in style double pump. I feel like I am not getting all the milk out and would also like to pump in less time (more efficient pumping). What pumping techniques can I use to pump in less time and pump more.
Re: Pump techniques
There's a thread at the top of this forum titled, "Maximizing Production while Pumping". It's got a link to a video that explains compressions and hand expression. If you haven't seen it, I would recommend watching it. Are you already doing compressions and hand expression when you pump?
Re: Pump techniques
How old is your baby? After the 3 months growth spurt, most babies take 1 to 1.5 ounces per hour. And this amounts remains the same until they wean (after six months, they'll eat some solids too). So if your baby is drinking a ton more than that, it may be overfeeding. Are you using a slow flow nipple?
With your long shifts, I think you may need to pump one more time in a work day to empty your breasts frequently enough to keep your supply up. Adding an additional session, even a short one, could really help. Ideally, you should pump every 3 hours, or 4 hours at the absolute maximum.
And absolutely check out that sticky on maximizing production! Massaging your breasts (breast compression) can REALLY help get more milk out in a shorter time. If you can pump for a longer time a couple times a day, you might be able to increase production by working on getting a second letdown. This doesn't work for everyone (everyone has their own "storage capacity"), but it works for a lot of women. Then you have a longer session, but you're making more milk. :goodluck