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Thread: How much to pump for an 8 month old?

  1. #1
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    Default How much to pump for an 8 month old?

    My 8 month old LO is still breastfed and she has also started on pureed food, too. Usually during the day she nurses on command. Now that her father and I are separated, for the time being, she will go stay with him some of the week, probably no more than 3 days in the beginning, while she is still reliant on my milk for the majority of the time. In fact, for now, it will only be 2 days, probably. I hate that he won't be seeing her more, but we are thinking of my milk supply and getting into the rhythm of me pumping for her.

    I have never been away from her for 24 hours. The longest I have been away was at work for 8 hours. I have looked on KellyMom and other sites for suggestions about how much milk an 8 month old needs in a day, and how frequently, along with some solid food here and there. I have gotten anywhere from 25-45 ounces. I only have about 30 saved up frozen, and the idea of running out of milk or not pumping enough scares me! I do not want to have to supplement with formula.

    So, how often should I pump while my baby is away from me? Every three hours, more or less? Right now, I only have a manual pump with me, until I get my double electric back. How often should my LO eat, and how much at each feeding? When I worked, we would give about 4 oz. at a time, every 2-3 hours. When does the serving size become larger, or does it?

    Kind of overwhelmed. Sorry for the long post. I am hoping my boyfriend and I can make it through this tough time. We are truly taking this separation to find out if we can work through all this, and in the meantime I just want to do everthing possible to give my baby breastmilk for as long as I possibly can.
    Breastfeeding stay-at-home mama of a 16-month-old daughter.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: How much to pump for an 8 month old?

    45 ounces is very high. I very much doubt your baby will need anywhere near that. Around 25 ounces is more likely. I know the rule of thumb for work type separation says 'an ounce and a half per hour of separation' but I believe that is assuming baby is sleeping more and eating less at night-thus eating more during the day-make sense?

    I suggest you request that dad read these tipsheets on bottle feeding the breastfed baby and safe milk handling. Milk is often tossed or otherwise wasted unnecessarily, because it is more stable and resistant to bacteria, unlike formula. So formula safety guidelines do not apply to breastmilk.

    (If dad might be offended that it says 'ideas for day care' take the info and put it on another sheet maybe?)

    If dad has not been alone with baby much, particularly at night, tips on ways your baby prefers to be comforted–so he has tools to use without feeding her more than she needs- may be helpful.

    I would suggest, pump as often as you can at first, at least every three hours while you are awake, to see how well you produce when pumping. Every mother is different in this, so don’t be overly concerned if you do not pump much, particularly at first. Don't pump for ever each session, 20 -30 minutes tops, and no need to keep a strict schedule, just pump when it works best as long as it's with reasonable frequency. do you have a double sided electric pump?

    This sort if thing is so hard, I am sorry you are having this very rough time. It sounds like you are both thinking of baby's needs which is so great.

    bottlefeeding the breastfed baby and safe storage and handling of human milk: http://www.llli.org/docs/00000000000...fyour_milk.pdf

  3. #3
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    Default Re: How much to pump for an 8 month old?

    Thank you for the info! My baby's dad is very helpful and knowledgable, and I have taught him as we went about breastmilk safety, etc. I never have heated a bottle of milk, because I have always just breastfed her while I am there. He and his mother are the ones who have done all that, and I guess it has worked, but you are right about needing the techniques that will put her to sleep and keep her calm without the nursing that is probably very comforting to her.

    Our LO always nurses to sleep, but recently, her dad and I went on a date and her grandma took care of her and rocked her to sleep, and she was absolutely fine without nursing. She is highty adaptable, so that is a real load off about this whole situation.

    When I freeze my milk to give to baby's dad for his days, I am probably going to keep it in a cooler and give it to him. But, then he was thinking of putting it in the fridge as soon as he gets home, so that it will be thawing for the couple days. Is that okay? We were concerned that it may start to thaw en route, and re-freezing it may be an issue. So if it thaws gradually over a couple days, how long can the thawed milk stay in the fridge?

    When you said that breast milk is tossed more frequently what did you mean?

    Also, recently I added chilled fresh milk to thawed frozen milk. Is that wrong? My LO did not take the bottle, so I was kind of confused it was a bad idea.

    Thank you for your help! I know that both her daddy and I want what is best for our LO. For now, that is to be separate but to make it as easy as possible to give her breastmilk and keep up my supply. He is very very supportive, and I think that makes this whole transition a lot more doable.
    Breastfeeding stay-at-home mama of a 16-month-old daughter.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: How much to pump for an 8 month old?

    When you said that breast milk is tossed more frequently what did you mean?
    If formula is left in a bottle after a feeding, it has to be discarded according to formula manufactures. With breast milk "leftovers" the bottle can be stored in the fridge until the next feeding.
    Also, bottles should be small. 8 months it will depend a good deal on baby’s personality how much she wants at a feed, but 2-4 ounces in each bottle should be plenty.
    So, keeping bottles small AND knowing it is ok to save leftovers cuts way back on wasted milk.

    The guidelines I linked say use thawed milk within 24 hours but it can be refrozen! If that freaks you out, if the milk is not completely thawed when it gets to your bf's house, which it probably will not be, it can be refrozen. A little thawing and then refreezing is fine. And 'unfreezing' frozen milk when you want to feed baby is so quick, (especially if the milk has been stored in appropriately small, 2 ounces 'servings,') the best course is probably for dad to keep the milk in the freezer if possible until ready to use.

    Also, recently I added chilled fresh milk to thawed frozen milk. Is that wrong? My LO did not take the bottle, so I was kind of confused it was a bad idea.
    I would not say this is a bad idea, but it may unnecessarily complicate things. You really cannot go wrong both storing milk in small amounts and offering milk in small amounts. That way, if you have a bottle baby is refusing, you are not wondering if it was the fresh or thawed milk that was the problem. kwim?

    So my question would be, does your baby accept your thawed, previously frozen milk? Because if baby refuses expressed milk, especially if it has been stored in the fridge or especially, frozen, you will need to consider if excess lipase is the culprit. This makes milk smell soapy. It is perfectly safe for baby but some baby's object and won't drink it.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: How much to pump for an 8 month old?

    My baby has only refused frozen milk twice, and my boyfriend said at the time it smelled soapy once. The second time was this one, when I mixed frozen with fresh. But otherwise she has always always taken it and had no issue with it.

    I would prefer to give in small amounts and I always freeze in smaller portions, too. I don't know where I read that thawing milk and then refreezing was a bad idea. Does that mean completely thawing? I mean en route it may just thaw a little bit.

    I think I am going to give my boyfriend a list or some info, because I think he thinks that keeping it thawed in the fridge for a couple-3 days is okay, and if its only ok for 24 hours I have to let him know. I don't imagine thawing it from frozen could be that big of a deal. And adding two frozens together is okay, right, to make 4 oz, if I have it frozen in 2 oz bags?
    Breastfeeding stay-at-home mama of a 16-month-old daughter.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: How much to pump for an 8 month old?

    I think that freezing, and thawing (but keeping cold) and then refreezing anything edible is generally thought to be a bad idea. But there is bad as in, may harm taste, texture, and to a small degree, nutritional content, and there is 'bad' as in, possibly dangerous.

    These guidelines are from the womanly art of breastfeeding that was published in 2010. So they are based on the most recent data available at that time, which I think is the most recent data, as far as I know. And these are different than former recommendations, many of which are based (incorrectly) on formula use guidelines. And it does say that formerly frozen milk that is defrosted but kept at refrigerator temp (not room temp or heated) can be refrozen within 24 hours of thaw. Personally, I would instead simply refreeze the only slightly unfrozen milk as soon as it gets to bf's house.

    And it can stay frozen until ready to serve. It takes just a couple minutes to defrost breastmilk if you use the under running water method.

    the document I linked in previous post should give your bf the info he needs. were you not able to open that link? The doc is two pages.
    Lipase can be ‘fixed’ by heat treating (scalding) your milk right after expressing but before storage. So, if it does turn out baby is bothered by it, there is that option. Again, excess lipase effected stored milk is perfectly safe for baby to drink.

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