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Thread: Pumping Frequency & DD's intake

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    13

    Default Pumping Frequency & DD's intake

    I'm working 3 days a week and pumping for my 4 mo DD while I'm away.

    She typically only takes 3.5 oz bottles 3 times while I'm out of the house, about 7a-5p. I nurse her when I get home, and a couple more times that evening, and then once in the middle of the night, and then in the morning before I leave. So she nurses 5x and gets 3 bottles on a day that I work. She is gaining weight just fine, but I worry that she should be taking more than 3.5 oz. from the bottle at a time.

    The other thing is that I pump 3x/day when I'm at work and produce at least twice what she consumes while I'm away, sometimes even 3 times what she takes. I'm really grateful I have a good supply, but it is a pain to scald and store all that extra milk. (I have a lipase issue, and need to scald if she isn't taking it w/in 24 hours.) On a couple of occasions, I've been super busy at work and only gotten 2 pumping sessions in. I seem to produce the same amount whether I pump 2 or 3x per day. I'm thinking about switching to regularly pumping 2x/day. I suppose the only reason I don't is because I'm worried that in time, I might not produce enough, which is silly given that it seems I pump the same, plus I pump more than she needs. I've heard there can sometimes be a drop in supply when the baby hits 6 months- which will coincide with my full time return to work, so I guess I'm worried about the future. But if I have such oversupply, maybe this also means that adding in a session if it drops too much won't be an issue?

    So, 1) should I be worried about DD not taking more?
    2) Do you think pumping 2x a day is a bad idea?

    Thanks in advance, I would really appreciate any thoughts or comments on this!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    10,440

    Default Re: Pumping Frequency & DD's intake

    I would not worry about the first as long as she;s growing well.

    The second..There are several moms here who have dropped to pumping twice a day at work, and hopefully they will come by to chime in on how well that worked for them and how they did it and how it worked on the weekends.

    What I could see potentially happening is that your supply might drop because of the consistently reduced demand (it works now because you're normally putting that much demand on it, but when you drop a session, the demand lessens, and usually your supply lessens too), but it might be OK. I make 30-40 oz a day on just 4-5 sessions every 24 hours, but every time I drop a session, I do drop a few ounces in the long run, like over time.
    Susan
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    13

    Default Re: Pumping Frequency & DD's intake

    Thanks for the reply, Susan! I appreciate your input. I'm guessing I still pump 22-30 ounces in 2 sessions just because the 2 (v. 3) is a sporadic thing. So I could see it dropping more if I was consistently doing only 2. Also, not sure if this makes a difference but I'm tandem nursing my 2 y 10 mo old who is set to wean at 3..

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    10,440

    Default Re: Pumping Frequency & DD's intake

    Oh, boy, that's why you have so much milk! Tandem nursing

    I don't know...changing a lot all at once might make you drop a little too low for comfort, and while your supply regulates, you might be physically uncomfortable, kwim. It seems like your LO will be 6 months (prime for a growth spurt), going back to work and weaning LO1 at the same time...all of those could cause a downward trend in milk production.
    Susan
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Southern NM
    Posts
    712

    Default Re: Pumping Frequency & DD's intake

    I am gone from my LO from 7:30 AM until about 4:30. During that time I pump twice. When I first went back to work last spring I would usually do three pumpings, but administration changed our teaching schedule this fall and I cannot get more than two pumping sessions in. Since I started back to school in the fall, my LO has not been particularly interested in bottles when I am gone; he went from eating about 12 oz while I was gone to eating about 8 oz. The two pumpings produce a lot more than he is currently needs. With my last one, however, at about nine months he suddenly increased the amount he was eating at the same time that my supply went down and, after burning through my freezer stash, I had to supplement with formula. So this time I figure I am just banking in case of a problem. It seems like with weaning your older one, the sixth month growth spurt and going back full time all coming up you might want to hold off on decreasing your pumping until you have done all of these transitions.
    I am Erin--happily married to the nerd of my dreams for 15 years
    High School Science Teacher
    Mother to: Thing 1 9/23/01, bf 15 mo, diagnosed with stage 4 neuroblastoma 1/29/02, officially cancer free for ten years in August 2012
    Thing 2 6/6/05, bf 12 mo, obsessed with dynamite
    Glowworm 2/18/11, bf 15 months and counting

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