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Thread: When do I pump now?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
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    Default When do I pump now?

    So I've been pumping round the clock to feed baby for 4 weeks now. He's started latching and drinking, and the last two days has been *mostly* fed from the breast. He's had about 150 mls from the bottle each day.

    The thing is he is still persnickity about latching and sometimes when he pops off there is no getting him back on, so it doesn't seem like a full feeding. And often he wants one breast and not the other.

    When do I pump now? The LC at my ped says "once in a while" but that's not really specific enough for my OCD brain. My supply is a little lower the last three days- at about 21 oz when it was about 29 ozs a day. And I'm worried about losing it. But I also don't want to be empty when baby eats, and he's not on a schedule.

    Also, how long should he be feeding? He'll get on for ten minutes max. He seems satiated and refuses a bottle afterwards, or will only take about 20-30 ml.

    Thanks ladies.
    Last edited by @llli*apifera; July 24th, 2013 at 11:00 AM.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: When do I pump now?

    I think OCD could work to your advantage here, as you transition from pumping to nursing. Can you get your hands on a professional grade baby scale, one that is accurate to the 1/10th of an oz? The LC might have one available for rental or know where you can get one. Wth the scale, you can do before and after nursing weights, and by subtracting the before from the after, you will gain a very accurate reading of how much your baby took in while nursing. If baby drank around 2-4 oz, then there's no need to supplement and pumping is optional. If baby seems hungry, you just put him back on the breast. If baby drank less than 2 oz, and is acting hungry, then maybe you want to give him a bottle and then go and pump.

    A lot of what you're seeing is normal. Babies often require just one breast per feeding, and it's common for a baby to feed in just 5-10 minutes, particularly once he has become an adept nurser or when mom has a high supply.
    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: When do I pump now?

    Ah! See, google says baby should be on 40 minutes! Sometimes, per breast! And I know from experience dr google is often wrong. That's reassuring. He pops off and has the "drunken sailor" look, a beard of milk, and burps like a champ, sometimes spitting up, but he's only on a short while so it confused me. He has an upper lip tie and a terribly painful and shallow latch so I worried that between that and the short time he's on it wasn't enough.

    Monday, at the LC he got about two ozs. We're going in for another weigh and feeding tomorrow and I'll ask her about renting.

    I would LOVE to cut down on the pumping, and have gone four hours without pumping so far today and I'm so used to doing it I feel guilty!

    Plus, going to pump when he's awake is really difficult as he simply does NOT want to be put down, even for a second. Daddy and I have been holding him nonstop. I love holding him but I need to do things, like eat... and obviously pump!
    Last edited by @llli*apifera; July 24th, 2013 at 11:35 AM.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: When do I pump now?

    Before I went back to work I would pump first thing in the morning after I nursed. My LO would usually go back to sleep for a bit after she ate but she always let me put her in the bassinet for an hour or so which I guess made it easier for me.
    I would also pump when my DH got home from work. He would call me to tell me when he was en route. I would nurse and when he got home I would take a shower and pump. I also pumped at some point over night most nights. Usually around 1am. At first the only time I was getting more than an ounce was the early morning pump but after a while I was getting 2-3 oz each time and often times closer to 4-5oz in the am.
    This allowed me to always have a few bottles on hand if we were running errands or I was going to be out for a while and build a pretty decent freezer stash.
    There were days when my LO was extra hungry/clingy and I didnt get to pump all three times and there were days where she was extra sleepy and I snuck in an extra session.
    mommy to Ellie - 2/28/13 8lb 3oz 19.5in

  5. #5
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    Default Re: When do I pump now?

    Elliemommy- how often did you nurse? I assume that in addition to those three pumps you nursed her about 8-11 times a day? Was this after your supply was established? I've read that under 3 months you're still building supply. My L/O still needs a bottle here and there. I am wondering if when he does I should pump, or if it's okay to do what you were doing and pump "sometimes" (on a schedule).

    Thanks!

  6. #6
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    Default Re: When do I pump now?

    Double post- somehow I keep doing this! Oops.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: When do I pump now?

    Question: When baby seems to be not getting much and I pump right after and there's not much at all in a breast that ALWAYS gives me at least 2 ozs, is this an indication he got food and was just swallowing quietly or is my supply going down now that he's BFing?

    I pumped just under 400 ml today and he ate about 250 from the bottle. I normally, when not bfing at all, pump about 800 ml. (on a good day)

  8. #8
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    Default Re: When do I pump now?

    Any time you give a bottle, you should pump to make up for the missed stimulation. Even if you get very little milk, the stimulation will help you maintain supply.

    It can be really hard to correctly identify a "good" feeding vs. a "bad" one. But if you pump right after nursing and the pump can't pull much milk, that is a good indication that the baby did manage to get the milk, even if the feeding didn't seem all that productive.
    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!"

  9. #9
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    Default Re: When do I pump now?

    Well, he just had what looked like a classically good feed and I got a ton at the pump so I'm stumped! LOL.

    He had nothing but the breast all night. Waking him up to get him to breastfeed is really hard. It's going to take some work to master. The bottle is so stressful for him that he wakes up right away.

    People keep telling me baby will LET ME KNOW if he's hungry. And he's not crying, but sometimes he seems a little frantic at latch then immediately falls asleep when I let down. Is it true he'd be crying and it would be obvious if he wasn't getting enough? It's so weird not being able to measure what's going into him....

  10. #10
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    New Jersey
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    Default Re: When do I pump now?

    apifera- Here is what my schedule looked like:
    7am Nurse and pump
    9:30am Nurse
    11:30am Nurse (Sometimes i would pump around 12:30 if Ellie was sleeping. This was usually her longest nap of the day)
    2pm Nurse
    4pm Nurse
    5pm shower and nurse
    7:30pm Nurse
    9:30pm Nurse
    11pm Pump if Ellie was still asleep
    1am Nurse and sometimes pump
    3:30am Nurse and pump if i was too tired at 1am

    These represent the 20-40min nursing sessions where she usually spent time on both sides.
    There were occasionally a few shorter sessions of about 5-10 minutes in the evenings between the 9:30 and 1am sessions although many nights she would sleep through this time. She almost never had a long feeding as that was always her sleepiest time of day. About twice a week my husband would get up at the 3:30 feeding and give a bottle so i could get a solid block of sleep. On those nights I would sleep from about 1:30-6, get up and pump and then feed as usual at 7.
    I fed her on demand so this was not an exact science but I did notice that she put herself on somewhat of a schedule so I did have some consistency.
    Hope this helps!
    mommy to Ellie - 2/28/13 8lb 3oz 19.5in

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