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Thread: Can't manage a let-down when pumping

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Posts
    108

    Default Can't manage a let-down when pumping

    I recently started dabbling in pumping to build up a stash and I'm having major problems getting a let-down, which is a let-down (ha! bad pun intended). Sometimes I manage to get one let-down, but not always, and I never get two. I utilize the "stimulation" phase in PISA, but it doesn't really help. At times I can tell there's milk readily available, but it just won't come out. So frustrating!!!

    How do I go about figuring this out? I'm going back to work in 2 months and I'll be pumping during the day, so this has me worried.

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

    Default Re: Can't manage a let-down when pumping

    Practice. Massage. I had a super hard time pumping for Gav at first too. Like no milk would come out. If I spent 15 minutes pumping. I got nothing for my trouble, and I needed longer than the recommended time. And even now, it takes me for.ever to pump. Massage and compressions will help.

    There is an iPod podcast that supposedly helps too. I can't remember its name.
    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
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    183

    Default Re: Can't manage a let-down when pumping

    Found this blog post of suggestions that might be useful...
    http://custommademilk.wordpress.com/...usive-pumping/
    3/2011 {EBF to 6mos, now BF and BLS, CD, EC'ing since 5mos - in underwear at 11mos, and babywearing}
    Babywearing International has chapters - see if there's one near you... most have lending libraries!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Posts
    108

    Default Re: Can't manage a let-down when pumping

    So I've been trying my best, and I'm still having A LOT of trouble letting down to the pump. Just now my husband took LO to the doctor and I tired to pump about an hour after they've been gone. I pumped for over 30 minutes, and I got DROPS at best. With massage and compressions.

    I'm going back to work in 1.5 months and if I can't pump, that means weaning. It's breaking my heart.

    Any advice?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    103

    Default Re: Can't manage a let-down when pumping

    is your pump new? do the horns fit properly? this sounds like a really dumb question and i apologize but is it assembled properly? (i acatully tried pumping without membranes once and couldn't figure out why no milk was coming out) do you have any discomfort while trying to pump? how old is your baby?
    mom to ds daniel 12/16/09 and ben 2/27/11

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    10,440

    Default Re: Can't manage a let-down when pumping

    Is your pump working properly? Seriously, take the whole thing to an IBCLC and make sure it is working right.
    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!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    530

    Default Re: Can't manage a let-down when pumping

    Are the white membranes new enough? When I first started to pump, I didn't realize how important they were. I was only getting drops for like a week, before I realized that I just needed to replace the membranes.
    ~ Megan

    Mommy to Alex (born 2/27/11) and Katie (born 3/31/14)

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Posts
    381

    Default Re: Can't manage a let-down when pumping

    When I have trouble letting-down I look at photos/videos of my little ones. Not the cure but it may help!
    Full time working Mom to 3, DH is my hero as a SAHD:
    DS July'09, nursed for 12 weeks
    DD1 & DD2 April'11, tandem nursed for 16 months

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Posts
    108

    Default Re: Can't manage a let-down when pumping

    Thank you for everybody's feedback. My pump is brand new and properly assembled because there were two times when I managed to get a let-down and got 2 ounces of milk.

    Unfortunately I can't seem to be able to do that again. I'm at my wit's ends...

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Posts
    88

    Default Re: Can't manage a let-down when pumping

    Have you tried nursing your LO on one side and pumping the other? That is how I started pumping, then I graduated to pictures and video.
    EBFing, CDing, BWing, co-sleeping mamma to Bennett (9/5/11).
    Excited to be a BM donor through Indiana Mothers Milk Bank (http://www.immb.org/).

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