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Thread: Breastfeeding, Pumping, and Supply

  1. #1

    Default Breastfeeding, Pumping, and Supply

    I'm new here, and have a question...my LO is 3 weeks old and I have been BFing exclusively. I decided it was time to start trying to build a supply of EBM for when we go out, and when I return to work (eventually). In the breast feeding class I took the lactation consultant suggested pumping a little bit after each feeding during the day, to get a full bottle by the end of the day. I started doing that on a Wednesday, and got a full bottle by Wednesday night. I skipped pumping on Thursday, and on Friday did the little bit of pumping after each feeding again. However, I noticed on Friday that LO was extremely hungry more often than usual. He had been on a pretty solid 3 hour schedule for almost a 1.5 weeks, but was waking up to feed (and eating voraciously when he did) every 1.5 - 2 hours. I couldn't help wondering if somehow the pumping was depleting my supply. How long will it take my milk supply to catch up with the supplemental pumping? Or could it be my timing? For whatever reason, I can't seem to manage to go straight from BF to the pump, and usually end up doing the supplemental pumping about 30 mins to 1 hour after his feeding. I want to build up a supply, but also want to make sure I'm leaving enough in my breast for him to get what he needs. Does it sound like a supply issue, or is it just coincidence that he started being hungry more around the time I started to pump?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2008

    Default Re: Breastfeeding, Pumping, and Supply

    Three weeks is a prime time for a growth spurt when the baby will naturally want to eat more and more often, so it may just be a case of bad timing. If LO is eating more often, then he's doing the job of building up your supply all on your own. If you're concerned about supply for him while he's nursing, you might wait a week or so and try to pump again then.
    Mom to Anna, March 28, 2008

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2007

    Default Re: Breastfeeding, Pumping, and Supply

    The more milk you express, the more you make. Agree with pp, that it is prob just a growth spurt. Wait for that to settle down then resume pumping after sessions. I pumped alot like that and it worked really well for us. Don't be discouraged if you cant get as much when pumping. Just make sure you are always nursing first.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2008

    Default Re: Breastfeeding, Pumping, and Supply

    I find I have most milk in the morning so I just pumped once a day after the first or second feed to build up a supply. I didn't get much at first, but it builds over time if you pump for a few minutes after the last drops of milk each time and now I get at least 3oz each time. I felt that way if I was depleting my supply it was only once a day and we had the rest of the day to catch up. It's a lot easier than pumping several times through the day too. You need to consistently do it everyday to train your body to make that extra milk. It should only take a couple of days to catch up. I'm sure someone else will know more about this, but I think I've read that pumping too much early on can lead to oversupply.

    I agree with pps that it's probably just a growth spurt. If your supply was much lower than normal he would seem unsatisfied at each feed, but it might be worth holding off pumping until he's over it.

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