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Thread: Is pumping twice a day enough?

  1. #1

    Default Is pumping twice a day enough?

    I returned to work yesterday and wonder if I only need to pump twice a day. Before, I'd feed my three month old four times during the time I'm now away from him, generally on only one side at a time, which seems to me to be the equivalent of two pumping sessions.

    Now, I feed him at 6:45 a.m., and he gets to daycare at 8:15. I pumped at 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. and got sixteen ounces, enough for four bottles for the next day. He only had three bottles at DC yesterday. I picked him up at 5:15 and fed him at 5:30. We got home at 6:30 and I fed him at 7:00 before bed, again at 1:15 and 5:30 and 6:45. In that 24 hour period, he ate eight times.

    If I'd pumped three times at work, I would have ended up with more than the 16 ounces I pumped. So is two now enough? I know if I start pumping less in quantity that I'd need to up the frequency.


    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    Default Re: Is pumping twice a day enough?

    your output will eventually (in a few days maybe a week) drop if you decrease the demand by only pumping twice a day.... I would pump a minimum of three times a day to maintain my supply.
    Autumn
    Moma to *Silas* 10-30-07

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
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    Default Re: Is pumping twice a day enough?

    Personally, with a three-month-old, I wouldn't cut any sessions yet. I'd continue to pump at the times you would normally nurse. If you stop pumping at those times, your body will interpret that as not needing to produce as much, and you can get into a tough situation with trying to rebuild supply, which can be challenging with a pump. I guess what I'm saying is that if what you've been doing is working, I wouldn't change it.

    Good luck!

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Is pumping twice a day enough?

    Short answer is no. Twice a day can't be trusted to maintain your supply. Especially this early. Worst case scenario is you build a freezer stash by creating extra. Which you want. Because at some point before you hit a year, you will hit a wall. At least once, possibly twice. Most women take a hit when they get their period back which will probably happen sooner for you rather than later if you are already back at work. And most women hit a wall somewhere between 9 and 10 months. And when that happens you will needs a stash to supplement with. Whereas if you only pump twice a day, we know for sure you will make less and it will be less often. Make room for three sessions.

    Way too lazy for formula

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
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    Default Re: Is pumping twice a day enough?

    Like everyone has already said, keep pumping more than 2x/day. My IBCLC told me that any time you go more than 3 hrs without removing milk you are telling your body to make less milk. When I pumped at work I would make sure at least every 3 hrs I'd pump, so, typically midmorning, around 10, then at lunch around 12:30 and 3:30.
    Nursed my sweet daughter 3 years, 3 mos.

  6. #6
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Is pumping twice a day enough?

    I would for sure pump 3x per day at this stage.
    Mommy to Maxwell 10-9-07 weaned with love (a party and a remote control monster truck) on his 4th birthday
    My Boy 3-16-10
    And my sweet pea Sam 2-12-11

    Watch Your Language

  7. #7

    Default Re: Is pumping twice a day enough?

    I'll bow to concensus. I already have a huge stash but I'll keep adding to it. Others had cautioned me a few weeks ago about OS so I thought replacing existing feedings was enough.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Is pumping twice a day enough?

    I think though that you assume that 4 feeding on one side each = 2 double pumping sessions and it doesn't. You have to stimulate your body more frequently in order to maintain your supple. Plus the pump will always be a distant second and milk removal and eventually you will need the added stimulation.
    Mommy to Maxwell 10-9-07 weaned with love (a party and a remote control monster truck) on his 4th birthday
    My Boy 3-16-10
    And my sweet pea Sam 2-12-11

    Watch Your Language

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
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    504

    Default Re: Is pumping twice a day enough?

    Agreed - I'd pump at least three times. Over time, you will get a better feel for your pumping output and will be able to determine how stable it is, and could drop a pump perhaps. For now, I'd say better safe than sorry!

    Can you pump and drive? (I do - it's easy!) You could pump on the way to work which would save you from taking more time away from work. And the morning is a great time to pump anyways.
    Blessed with DS - born 9/2/09 - nursed/pumped for 12 months
    Blessed with DD - born 3/27/12 my dreamfeeder

    903 ounces donated.
    http://www.wakemed.org/landing.cfm?id=135

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    Default Re: Is pumping twice a day enough?

    It sounds like maybe you're worried that you're producing too much? How long have you been back at work? I had a problem when I was pumping three times a day with producing twice as much as she would drink and then having engorgement all day Friday and Saturday, supply evened out on Sunday and then back to crazy pumping amounts on Monday. I have three day weekends.

    I did drop down to two pumpings a day after a couple weeks because I just didn't want to have over 200 ounces of milk in my freezer. So I pumped twice a day from months 4 to 8 or 9, I think, and then I went back to pumping 3 times. However, my total pumping time was about the same - I would either do two 30 minute sessions or 3 twenty minute sessions.
    Tracie

    Mommy to
    Lilah 10/08 nursed 25 months
    Beatrix 01/11 nursed 30 months

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