Happy Mothers Breastfed Babies
Results 1 to 7 of 7

Thread: How do you know when to quit pumping?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    2,627

    Default How do you know when to quit pumping?

    My dd is 10 mos old (+ 1 week to be precise!) and I have been pumping in addition to breastfeeding due to poor milk removal and a host of other issues. I have gradually been getting less when I pump although I think some of that is positive because she nurses quite a bit. I am still in contact with our LC and will likely discuss this with her in the next few weeks but also wanted some ideas here. I typically pump 5 x days now like this:

    4:30 a.m. pump twice 12 min apart and get 2-4 oz total
    7:00 a.m. pump 1-1.5 oz
    11:00 pump 1-1.5 oz
    3 pm pump 1-1.5 oz
    7 pm 1-1.5 oz

    She nurses all night long and before/between every pump session except the 4:30-7 a.m. one (I run in the mornings between my 4:30 and 7 a.m. pump session). I guess I am wondering how worth while all this work is and if I'd be doing about as much good to just nurse her a few more times a day. At the same time I am worried about decreasing my supply since it used to be quite low. She does eat some solids, maybe 4-6 oz total a day, max.

    I definitely plan to breastfeed her as long as she wants and I hope that is at least until she is two. But I also want to be done pumping around one year of age if I don't feel like that's too abrupt or tough on her. It has been so much work trying to breastfeed this girl. I love her more than anything in the world and it's so been worth it but I am also just tired and tired of pumping, tired of planning all of our outings around the pump schedule and just hope I'm not making unnecessary work for myself at this point.


    Thanks for any ideas. I am just wondering if most moms have 1-1.5 oz in them at most times so it's not that she's not emptying me all that much, OR, if I quit pumping, will I then be making 6-8 oz less a day? Or what if I just pump 3-4 x day instead of 5?
    Nursed my sweet daughter 3 years, 3 mos.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    2,627

    Default Re: How do you know when to quit pumping?

    Well, I am cutting back to 4 x/day for now and just making sure I nurse her very often.
    Nursed my sweet daughter 3 years, 3 mos.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    62

    Default Re: How do you know when to quit pumping?

    I don't know what the lactation consultants would say about this, but my own feeling is that if it was me I might get a scale and do some before and after weights on baby when breastfeeding. I actually have similar issues to your story and am thinking that this way, if you stop pumping, you will know if your supply has decreased significantly if she starts getting much less at most feeds. Just a thought?...........
    Hannah Aug 17/2009 (5pd15oz) Hyperemesis & Preeclampsia

    Still almost exclusively Just hanging on to our one per day!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    2,627

    Default Re: How do you know when to quit pumping?

    I borrowed a scale from our LCs for about 2 months when she was 2-3 mos old, now they have loaned most of them out the last I checked for premature babies so they don't have to come in to the clinic as often. I hate to be selfish and ask for one at this point but yes I know I'd love to know exactly what she's getting. I am terrible at estimating if she got anything or not. I have taken her in for nursing wts but she's SO distracted even in a dark pumping room that I don't know if I'm getting an accurate picture of what she's doing.

    One thought I have (this might be off, too, not sure) but that my supply has stayed fairly stable because of the amounts I get when I pump at work (just one day a week but I pump twice and am pretty consistent with that amount).

    I'm sort of torn because I hate pumping but would hate to not have enough milk for my baby. We've come way too far to give up at this point.
    Nursed my sweet daughter 3 years, 3 mos.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    62

    Default Re: How do you know when to quit pumping?

    That's too bad about the scales.........my friend found a used one another mom was done with on craig's list for much cheaper than new. I have been keeping an eye on craig's list for one myself.
    It does sound like if your weekly pumping amounts at work are stable then hopefully your supply is too. I like your plan of cutting the number of pumpings back to four and just taking it slow that way. Your plan is the same as mine.....to cut back to hopefully breastfeeding only (yeah no pumping!) by one year or so. Although, I can only get my little bean to BF one or two times a day for a few minutes each time. It sounds like you are doing better with that as you have night feedings and several BF's per day, also if as you say it seems baby's milk transfer is getting better than I think the whole picture seems really positive for you to meet your goal of that 1 year mark too. Good luck to you!
    P.S. let's both pat ourselves on the back for making it this far
    Hannah Aug 17/2009 (5pd15oz) Hyperemesis & Preeclampsia

    Still almost exclusively Just hanging on to our one per day!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    2,627

    Default Re: How do you know when to quit pumping?

    Good job to you, for sure! Has your little girl been on a nursing strike pretty much? Mine would just scream at me every time I tried for months and then one day while I was changing her diaper she pulled at my shirt and we tried to nurse and she did for a few minutes. Then that month she nursed about 4 times from a fully awake state. Then the next month she finally decided she liked nursing. I have no idea what changed for her but when she was on strike I could usually get her to latch on if she was basically asleep - a split second after showing wakening signs from a nap. If I waited until her eyes were open it was a lost cause.

    Now my baby nurses all the time, really, except that she is very distracted. I think that's pretty typical for a 10 month old though. She turned 10.5 mos old yesterday and we have milk in the freezer so I know we are safe to be getting milk through 12 months and beyond.


    Hang in there! This is not easy but I do know it's worth it.
    Nursed my sweet daughter 3 years, 3 mos.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    62

    Default Re: How do you know when to quit pumping?

    Yes, I have experienced her screaming at the sight of a breast too! Now that she is older she expresses her anger by smacking at my chest and writhing around when I try to pull her in to BF. When I do get her on she pulls off after a mere couple of minutes at best, sigh. I am glad that you have a good store of milk, it is a relief to know you will have milk to the one year mark no matter what. I also have a freezer full, one of the benefits of all that pumping I guess:-)
    Hannah Aug 17/2009 (5pd15oz) Hyperemesis & Preeclampsia

    Still almost exclusively Just hanging on to our one per day!

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •