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Thread: Pumping not keeping up with baby's demand

  1. #1
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    Jan 2008
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    Default Pumping not keeping up with baby's demand

    My 5.5 month old is now drinking 6 oz per feeding, either formula or BM, it doesn't matter. Problem is, I *struggled* just to get 5 oz before after TWO pumping sessions, and now can get about 4 oz. Needless to say, I have to supplement the 2 oz with formula. I don't know how to get around that. I am worried my pumping will just dwindled down. I BF her when I am home and overnight. Could my supply still decrease? I pump 2x per day at work. I don't have time to do more than that, and I want to constantly be pumping at home either. Help!

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Pumping not keeping up with baby's demand

    I'll try to come back in a little while with more suggestions, but one thing that has helped me get AT LEAST 1 more oz/session is to frequently switch breasts while I'm pumping. Basically, I pump one side until the milk stops spraying then switch to the other. I go back and forth between the two sides 4-5x's/session. I'm not sure why, but I think the placement of the horn is just a little different each time and different ducts are being emptied with each switch. Does that make sense?
    Sarah- Mommy to Ally (4/16/06) , Katlyn (11/13/07) & Rebekah (10/21/09)
    All three, all natural!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
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    Cool Re: Pumping not keeping up with baby's demand

    I'm having the same issues with my almost 5 month old too. I was wondering if its due to stress/lack of sleep on my part. I work 12 hrs at a time and I'm not always able to get away to pump on a timely basis. (and I end up getting painfully engorged). I was getting 5 oz total each time and now i'm barely able to get 3 oz sometimes. I feel bad because I let him have the breast on my days off - but I'm unable to pump a lot because of this. I'm not sure what to do either. I'm eating oatmeal and trying to keep up with my water intake - but i feel like its a very fragile line we walk when we have to work away from baby and are struggling to keep up with the demand. I'll keep looking to see if someone comes up with other tricks to try. But please know you aren't alone!

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Pumping not keeping up with baby's demand

    Hi ,

    I'll come back and check with you later, but I wanted to quickly post a link for you that has a lot of good suggestions for increasing the amount of milk you are able to pump: www.llli.org/FAQ/pumpwork.html

    It is a fairly common problem, but their are solutions.

    Hang in there!

    Tiana

  5. #5
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    Jan 2006
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    Default Re: Pumping not keeping up with baby's demand

    Here is a video that can help:
    http://newborns.stanford.edu/Breastf...roduction.html

    The link Tiana posted is really helpful. This link expands on that information:
    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/pumping/p..._decrease.html


    HTH!

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Pumping not keeping up with baby's demand

    Quote Originally Posted by LLLTiana View Post
    Hi ,

    I'll come back and check with you later, but I wanted to quickly post a link for you that has a lot of good suggestions for increasing the amount of milk you are able to pump: www.llli.org/FAQ/pumpwork.html

    It is a fairly common problem, but their are solutions.

    Hang in there!

    Tiana
    I had the same issues and this link helped..

    I was only geting 4 - 6 oz from 3-4 pump sessions....

    Now I managed to get 8-12 in the same sessions... I am away from him for approx. 12hrs.
    1. taking fenugreek and drinking mother's milk tea off and on
    2. upgraded to a double pump
    3. drink fluids at each nursing/pumping session (wasn't drinking enough)
    4. gave myself time to relax b4 pumping
    5. called and listen to lo cry/coo/yell while I was pumping (makes letdowns faster/more frequent)
    6. eating oatmeal at least once a day. (found an awesome recipe for oatmeal chocolate chip cookies)


    I still have to supplement but not as much as I did and I am hoping that as I try adjust my schedule I will be able to add sessions at home. I only pump at work now
    Married mama with 4 kiddos...2 girls (11 & 6) and 2 boys (21mo & 3mo)

  7. #7
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    Mar 2007
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    Default Re: Pumping not keeping up with baby's demand

    Most women have to pump more than once to get enough milk for one bottle. That is normal. It is actually odd to be able to pump enough during only two pumping sessions. I am envious of the moms who can! To avoid supplementation a lot of women (myself included) have to pump more than twice a day and/or pump when not at work. Sometimes it is hard to balance what is more important to you and/or for your baby (avoiding the formula or avoiding the pumping). There are things to help increase your pumping output but no real quick fixes. The more you pump/nurse the greater your supply will become. Using an electric double pump helps a lot. Breast compressions/massage helps with letdowns. If your pump has a letdown mode turning it off and back on will help stimulate additional letdowns. Sometimes taking something like fenugreek may help a little for some women. Drink plenty of water. I know it is hard, but your prolactin (milk producing hormone is highest around 2-3 am. So if you get up and pump then you should start seeing an increase in your pumping output after a few days.

    Good luck.
    Mom to Lainey (11-8-06)

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Pumping not keeping up with baby's demand

    Quote Originally Posted by Lainey's Mom View Post
    Sometimes it is hard to balance what is more important to you and/or for your baby (avoiding the formula or avoiding the pumping). There are things to help increase your pumping output but no real quick fixes. The more you pump/nurse the greater your supply will become. Using an electric double pump helps a lot. Breast compressions/massage helps with letdowns. If your pump has a letdown mode turning it off and back on will help stimulate additional letdowns. Sometimes taking something like fenugreek may help a little for some women. Drink plenty of water. I know it is hard, but your prolactin (milk producing hormone is highest around 2-3 am. So if you get up and pump then you should start seeing an increase in your pumping output after a few days.

    Good luck.
    That is so true....

    Does nursing at 2-3 help too?
    Married mama with 4 kiddos...2 girls (11 & 6) and 2 boys (21mo & 3mo)

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Pumping not keeping up with baby's demand

    Quote Originally Posted by babygurl View Post
    That is so true....

    Does nursing at 2-3 help too?
    Yes I believe it does. Removing milk at that time (pumping or nursing) helps increase the prolactin level, or so I was told by the LC when I was having pumping supply issues. I believe nursing is even better than pumping but I was not going to wake DD up to nurse if she was sleeping .
    Mom to Lainey (11-8-06)

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Pumping not keeping up with baby's demand

    Quote Originally Posted by babygurl View Post
    That is so true....

    Does nursing at 2-3 help too?
    Absolutely! Actually, night nursing is usually more effective than night pumping. It both increases your overall milk supply and decreases your baby's dependence on pumped milk (i.e. you don't have to send as much pumped work to daycare, because baby is getting more milk from direct nursing).

    Anything you can do to spend more time nursing when the two of you are together will have this effect.

    HTH!

    Tiana

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