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Thread: What am I missing here? (Pumping Output)

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
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    Utah
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    Default What am I missing here? (Pumping Output)

    I am pumping for my very petite nearly 11 month old. He drinks 3oz every few hours while I am away from him. I work 9hr days and I pump 3 times at work, and once at home after my son goes to bed, to get enough milk for him the following day.

    I can get about 6-7oz by pumping my three sessions at work. HOWEVER, I know that if I add a pumping session, I might be able to get a little bit more. Two days ago I tried pumping as soon as I got to work in addition to my normal pumping sessions. My entire output that day (at work) was only 5oz!! I still pumped 2oz at my night session, but I had to dip into my freezer to get what I needed to send to daycare.

    Can anyone explain this to me? I don't understand how pumping more often could lead to less output. The following day, I pumped my normal 3 sessions and got my normal 6-7oz. My period has not returned. My pump is less than 2 months old.

    Edited to take out some crazy repetitiveness.
    Last edited by @llli*kevins-mom; February 15th, 2013 at 10:45 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    20,615

    Default Re: What am I missing here? (Pumping Output)

    I don't know that there's a answer to your question beyond "Our bodies are unpredictable."

    Some possible explanations for what happened the other day:
    - You just had a weird day yesterday, and your supply was a little lower than usual.
    - You psyched yourself out. Pumping is a bit of a mind game- if you are tense, if you're scared or worried, your letdown can be inhibited.
    - Your body is trained to produce X number of oz at a given time of day, and one day wasn't enough to change that ingrained pattern.

    I know you needed to dip into your stash, and that probably sucked and made you even less confident, but I'd still suggest trying to add in another pumping session. Give it a week or two, and see what happens. Maybe after a few days, you will be more relaxed and your body will get the message that more milk is needed during the workday.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  3. #3
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    Default Re: What am I missing here? (Pumping Output)

    Thank you!

    It is really so discouraging to put out more effort and get less reward! It's really funny cause I pump 6/7oz per day and always send 9oz to daycare with my boy. But about 3-4 days a week, he is sent home with at least 2oz in one of his bottles. It seems impossible that he could only need 7oz of milk in a 9 hour day....but he grazes on solids all day and has been way too distracted to eat his bottles lately. I asked my daycare to put him in his pack n play so he can eat his bottles....but he's decided he wants to sit up while drinking, but hasn't yet learned that he needs to pick the bottle up higher and he gets so mad and throws his bottle across the room.

    Haha, I'll try again. I had abandoned it for now since I don't really NEED it. As we inch closer and closer to that 12month mark I'm realizing that if some days he drinks a little less milk at daycare, it's ok. He is such a booby monster when he's with me, I am positive that our nursing relationship is not in jeopardy.
    Nursling: Kevin (March 2012)

  4. #4
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    Feb 2012
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    California
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    Default Re: What am I missing here? (Pumping Output)

    I don't think it's all that out of the question that your 11 month old might only need 7 oz of breastmilk in a 9 hour separation. My DS only ever took about 6-7 oz during my 8ish hour workday. Especially since your little guy is almost a year old and is eating some solids, 7 oz might be enough for him, if he's not finishing the 9 oz you're sending. I'm not sure why you got less than usual pumping yesterday. It could be a herald that your period is about to return, my pump output dropped about a week before I got my first post-partum period. Or it could be a fluke. If you need to pump more, I agree with mommal that adding in an extra pumping session and waiting for about a week before you judge the results is the way to go. It takes awhile to see increased output from pumping more.
    First-time mama to Joshua, 10/29/11. 29 months and going strong! for 14 months; now finished with pump weaning!

  5. #5
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    Default Re: What am I missing here? (Pumping Output)

    Thanks Joshua's mommy!!

    I get so stressed about pumping that 9oz every day and he doesn't even drink it most day. It's silly! I feel like he SHOULD be drinking it, like I need to have the daycare force him to drink it (mostly because he's so petite). I'm probably just crazy though. I spend so much time worrying about whether I'm doing things right.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    Default Re: What am I missing here? (Pumping Output)

    You're welcome! Just remember, petite can be perfectly healthy too. As long as he's growing along his growth curve--whether that's in the 5th percentile or the 95th--and isn't dropping in percentiles, he's perfectly fine!
    First-time mama to Joshua, 10/29/11. 29 months and going strong! for 14 months; now finished with pump weaning!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
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    Utah
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    Default Re: What am I missing here? (Pumping Output)

    He's meeting milestones and is happy as can be and EXTREMELY active. But another part looks at his chart and sees my little homemade dot that is about 1lb below the 3rd percentile. My gut knows he's just fine. I was only 18lbs at my first birthday and my husband was very small growing up, too. Although, if my son stays on his own little curve, he will not hit the 17lb mark by his first birthday.

    I just know that he is not going hungry. Hungry babies are just not as happy as my little boy
    Nursling: Kevin (March 2012)

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