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Thread: OK to pump for night feeding help?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    36

    Default OK to pump for night feeding help?

    Hi-I have a 4 week old son. He has been breastfed exclusively except for one day last week when I was away from the house for an hour my husband gave him 2 ounces of my pumped milk, using a bottle. According to my husband baby sucked down 2 ounces in about one minute. He didn't seem to mind the bottle one bit and it hasn't affected the breastfeeding that I can tell.

    I would like to pump a little bit in order to have some milk in the freezer in case it's needed and also, so my husband can take over one night feeding per night. Is that a good plan or am I setting myself up for some difficulty with production or nipple confusion? I am new to all of this and I don't want to do anything I regret. At the same time, I am very tired and would love to get more than 2-3 hours of sleep in a row.

    If it's ok to go ahead, when and for how long should I pump? How much milk does a 4 week old usually consume in one feeding? Will I overproduce if I start pumping?

    Any suggestions and advice are greatly appreciated!

    Thanks,
    Joi

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
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    139

    Default Re: OK to pump for night feeding help?

    I did the pump extra so hubby could feed DS#1 at night and it caused my milk to almost vanish because it sent the signal to lower production because the milk wasn't being removed. If you do want hubby to give bottles, make sure you pump at the same time so your body doesn't get confused... it was sooooo hard to bring my milk back and it was very depressing for me when i had to supplement my son with formula and it took months to get my supply back to no supplemental formula... I definatley learned from my mistakes with DS#2, now I have oversupply issues! Definately better to have too much than not enough! So my advice for what it is worth is to not skip so DH can bottle feed... unless you are gonna get up and pump at the same time (which kinda defeats the purpose)

    HTH

    Tiffany

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
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    1,285

    Default Re: OK to pump for night feeding help?

    I considered this in the beginning too because I was DYING for some extra sleep! However, I decided against it because I didn't want to trick my body into thinking LO didn't need milk at that time and therefore make less milk. I was also afraid of engorgement and having to get up to pump anyway, which seemed like more work than just nursing the baby. So, for me, it was a lose lose situation to give a bottle at night. Whatever you decide, hang in there! It definitely gets easier and easier and you will get more sleep eventually!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    miles from nowhere
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    Default Re: OK to pump for night feeding help?

    I agree with the PPs I didn't do it because I was afraid that it would signal my body to make less milk at night and getting up to pump at night would mean even less sleep than I was getting nursing at night. It wasn't a good trade-off for me, but that's not to say it never works.

    Have you considered co-sleeping to get more sleep? It really rescued me after a month and a half of desperately trying to keep myself awake through those night feedings. I started doing it accidentally- falling asleep while nursing, but I got a lot more sleep that way. It can be done safely if you take certain precautions. If it is something you are interested in learning more about the different options for cosleeping and how to do it safely, check this out:
    http://www.pantley.com/elizabeth/boo...sbn=0071398856
    “We are not put on earth for ourselves, but are placed here for each other. If you are there always for others, then in time of need, someone will be there for you.”
    --Anonymous

  5. #5
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    Mar 2007
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    Default Re: OK to pump for night feeding help?

    I agree you probably do not want to skip a feeding without pumping. There were times in the begining when I just could not force myself up so DH would give a bottle of EBM. Then of course like a half our later I would be engorged and have to pump anyway. So, I should have just gotten up to nurse! I did not start co-sleeping (in the same bed) until DD was 3 months, but it was a life saver. It was easy to latch DD on and drift back to sleep somewhat. There are numerous ways to co-sleep if you are interested in that. I am sure that link has some great advice. When you do start pumping to build a freezer stash, they usually recommend pumping after the first morning feeding because milk supply is usually greater in the morning for most women. I think most LCs recommend waiting until 6 weeks to start pumping but I am not positive on that. I pumped before 6 weeks. It will likely increase your supply some but not drastically if you pump once a day in addition to nursing. They usually also recommend pumping for 10-15 minutes. Shorter, more frequent sessions are better than long, less frequent sessions. In the beginining you probably will not get a lot of milk. Don't be discouraged. That is normal. I think my DD ate 2-3 ounces in the begining then she went to 4-5 ounces when she was a little older. She never consistently ate more than 5 ounces in one session but I have heard of some babies who will.
    Mom to Lainey (11-8-06)

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
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    61

    Default Re: OK to pump for night feeding help?

    I might be in the minority but I think its okay...but I would only miss ONE feeding (going 4 hours AT MOST without feeding or pumping again.)

    I did this starting at 4 weeks and kept it up until my LO was 2 1/2 mo. It worked out great because she had no nipple confusion and I gave the stockpiled EBM to my mom and had some for my hubby so I could get away once a week. (my milk supply was well established and not affected at all as far as I could tell)

    Then, when my LO started going longer in between feedings and it wasn't necessary for them to feed her because I'd feed right before I left and once I got back...she wasn't getting the bottle at all for a long stretch. Then it happened...she now flatly refuses to take ANYTHING but the breast. If I could do anything over it would be to continue a bottle a day. Now I'm stressing about going back to work because no matter how hard I try, she won't take anything!!!


    20 hours of hypnobirthing and I LOVED every second of it!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
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    61

    Default Re: OK to pump for night feeding help?

    Forgot to address some of your Qs...

    Everyone's body is different and your ideal time to pump will depend on your baby's eating habits. I found that I had an abundance of milk in the morning.

    You should start out pumping AFTER you feed your baby. Initially, you probably won't get much at all from the pump and it'll seem hardly worth the trouble. Keep at it because eventually, you should be able to get 1-2oz out of each breast (sometimes more). Now I pump in between feedings because even if I pump my breasts "dry", my baby can suck enough milk out of them to make her full anyhow.

    You asked if you will "over produce" if you do this. Well, kind of. By pumping, you signal your body to produce more milk. Some women have problems with uncomfortable engorgement and leaking, but I never did. If you try this and it isn't working out for you, just stop. It won't be long before your breasts readjust to the demand of your baby.


    20 hours of hypnobirthing and I LOVED every second of it!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
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    616

    Default Re: OK to pump for night feeding help?

    with melsuzylu. If you fake your body to make more-it is more that you can store for future use! That is how I get extra supply! It does seem upsetting to pump for 20 min and only get an ounce or two, but when I put my lo down with her last feeding at 8pm I pump an extra session at 11 and get anwhere between 4-6 oz ---all extra!
    -Katie

    -Wife to Joe 5-15-04
    -First time mom to Courtney Ann 8-12-07
    -Became a mom of 2: Brendan Joseph was born 01-08-09
    -Breastfed both of them for one whole year
    -Now a new mom of 3: Emily Theresa born 12-14-11
    -Breastfeeding again and hope to go the full year!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    9

    Default Re: OK to pump for night feeding help?

    I agree with some of the PP that you might not want to skip a feeding due to the chance of decreasing your milk supply. Here's two things to consider though...

    First, how long does it take your LO to nurse rather than eat a bottle? Right now, my LO wakes at 4 am to feed. If I get up and nurse her, it takes 30-60minutes to feed her, then settle her back to bed. I'm completely awake and it takes me usually another 15 minutes to fall asleep. If I give my husband a bottle, and he cares for her, I can pump and we can all be back to bed in 20-30 minutes. So, it might seem like defeating the purpose of having your husband's help, but it could be worth it if you are waking up just enough to pump and then going back to sleep.

    Secondly, you have to consider how sleep deprivation is affecting your supply. If you are totally exhausted, but know that you can get 4 uniterrupted hours of good sleep because your husband will take a feeding for you, the gain from getting some good sleep might offset the risk of decreased supply from missing a feeding.

    Just something to consider - and remember, this stage doesn't last forever -you will get more sleep in the near future!

    On nipple confusion, every baby is different. My little one started on bottles kinda early on, and had no trouble with nipple confusion until the in-laws came to town. They formula fed their babies, and really wanted to help with feeding, so I ended up expressing more, and nursing less. After about two weeks of this, she started getting really fussy at the breast (it was hard work, mom!). So we went back to nursing exclusively for a while. I think I lucked out having a flexible baby - I won't make that mistake with my next, because we might not recover so easily!
    Last edited by Lindsayk; March 5th, 2008 at 02:45 PM. Reason: addition

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    36

    Default Re: OK to pump for night feeding help?

    Thank you all so much for taking the time to answer my questions. I haven't tried anything new yet--I'm still unsure of what to do so for now I'll just stay the course and try to catch a nap during the day to make up for the tough nights! Thank you!

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