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Thread: Diminishing Pumping Output - 9 month old

  1. #1

    Default Diminishing Pumping Output - 9 month old

    Help!

    I have a 9 month old daughter. I work full time M-F and pump every 3 hours at work. Typically, I pump about 3 oz per session at work, and then I usually have to add in a morning pumping session which gives me about another 1.5- 2 oz, which is just what my daughter needs. Lately, in the past few days, I have only been pumping about 2 oz per session at work, plus my additional 1.5-2oz in the morning. I have added another session after my daughter goes to bed in order to make up for the deficit, however I am still barely getting enough for her.

    I usually only feed her solids at dinner time, because I do not want to wean her too early. I wanted to see if there was any advice on how to make this work, as I don't see how I can add in any more pumping/nursing sessions while working full time?

    Should I increase the amount of solids she is getting?

    Any advice provided is appreciated!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    middle of IA
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    1,885

    Default Re: Diminishing Pumping Output - 9 month old

    there is a classic "pump slump" around 8-10 months, sounds like you're hitting it. doing a super pump weekend can help, where you pump after every nursing for the whole weekend. it's a pain in the butt but it usually works.

    any reason you can't switch to giving her solids at lunch, while she's at daycare, and no solids/only nursing at dinner? that would ease the strain on pumping plus give you more nursing stimulation.
    DS1 6/7/11
    DS2 10/29/13

    Nursing, pumping, cloth-diapering, babywearing, working professor mama with the awesomest SAHD ever.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
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    2,207

    Default Re: Diminishing Pumping Output - 9 month old

    How much is baby nursing at night? Nighttime nursing can be a big help for maintaining supply, especially for a mom working outside the home. Another suggestion is to do some pump maintenance - replace parts that can be easily replaced, such as membranes and possibly valves and flanges - sometimes that can make a difference. Or, if you feel like your pump may not be working as well as it used to, if you call the company they can help you rehab it. Are you doing breast compressions while pumping? That can help squeeze out another oz or more. And/or pumping longer, even if you are pumping dry; or trying to get a second letdown. I agree with auderey, I would focus on nursing when together, and move the solids to daycare - the last thing you want to do is to have her nurse less when she is with you because she's getting solids instead.

    You've done great getting to 9 months!

  4. #4

    Default Re: Diminishing Pumping Output - 9 month old

    Thank you! I may try sending some food with her to daycare tomorrow to see if that helps. How long do these types of slumps last? I do not want to wean yet, but I am really worried about not being able to pump enough. I will try to pump after each nursing session this weekend as I am able and see if that boosts me back up. It's so strange, I haven't changed anything, but its like I just suddenly stopped responding as well to my pump. Nothing appears worn on it as I take good care of it, but maybe I will*look into replacement parts that the manufacturer suggests. Thank you again!

  5. #5

    Default Re: Diminishing Pumping Output - 9 month old

    Oh and also, she nurses twice before bed, and sometimes she will nurse in the middle of the night, maybe a couple of times per week. She nurses once in the morning, then takes 3, 3-3.5 oz bottles while she is at daycare. She only nurses 5 times a day on the weekends, so I have been curious about whether I should change her feedings during the week, dropping one of her bottles? I have been too afraid to do that though!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Cleveland, OH
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    486

    Default Re: Diminishing Pumping Output - 9 month old

    Even if she only asks for nursing 5 times per day on the weekends, offer more often and try to get her to nurse more often on the weekends. I found that my DS would get really distracted and not realize he wanted to nurse until he was really hungry or thirsty, going many hours between, but if I put a boob in front of his face every 2-3 hours he would be like "oh yeah! I like that!" This would help increase my pumping output on Monday and Tuesday at least, then I could ride those extra ounces out over the week, so if by Friday I was a couple short I had a couple extra in the fridge.

    As PP said, totally normal to have a slump around now, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel; you are only a few short months away putting away the pump. Keep at it!
    My little man was born 12/17/2010.

    Baby girl was born 4/30/2014.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
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    2,207

    Default Re: Diminishing Pumping Output - 9 month old

    I agree with sassypants, definitely nurse as much as you can on the weekends. At that age I really focused on nursing over the weekends and didn't worry about how much solids LO was eating - baby will have plenty of time to pick up her solids intake after a year, and as sassypants says, once you get through the next three months you will have less pressure to produce with the pump! A lot of moms either pump wean at around a year, or cut back on their pumping. One other thought, keep in mind that a pump is a machine, and machines wear down. So if you don't have success changing out parts/rehabbing, one other option is to rent a hospital-grade pump for the last couple months. Also, is it possible your period is on the way? Supply can dip pretty dramatically in the days leading up to your period. Then it picks up again as your period winds down.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Diminishing Pumping Output - 9 month old

    So, since I am currently not pumping enough to feed her at daycare, I have started leaving her caregiver with some yogurt or baby food to feed her before she takes the bottle with the least amount in it. That seemed to work last week. So far, it looks like I am still on the path of not pumping enough (based off of my first session at work this morning). I do not want to feed her formula, but I just don't know what my short term solution is at the moment. I get trying to increase my supply, but I guess I really need to know what to do until the supply picks up.

    Thank you!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    2,207

    Default Re: Diminishing Pumping Output - 9 month old

    Unfortunately I don't think there is any magical solution - I know you've added in an extra pump, but you may have to add in another if you're not keeping up. Have you tried changing out the membranes? What kind of pump are you using?

  10. #10

    Default Re: Diminishing Pumping Output - 9 month old

    Hi, I just joined the forum to post on a similar situation/dilemma...I wanted you to know you're not alone! I have an 8.5mth old and have also noticed a big decrease in how much I get from pumping/session. I've tried pumping longer but that hasn't helped. I work full-time also, and have been having our nanny give my son food late morning and then we give him food for dinner. I'm going to try decreasing the dinner food to nurse more, and take the advice of feeding all the time on the weekend. I have also started taking Fenugreek seed this week at the suggestion of a few friends. I haven't seen much results but I'm hopeful that it will help. Have you considered this? Have others used any other herbs, etc?

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