In certain circumstances you can't always breastfeed your baby "in the moment". If you are going to work for example. Or if your child is born prematurely and does not yet have a sufficient suction reflex fully drink from the breast. If baby cannot, for whatever reason, access your breast whenever he is hungry, you can use a pump. This helps maintain milk production, and ensures that baby has your breastmilk available even if you and your breast aren't.
If your baby does not drink, or barely drinks, and you find yourself bottling your breastmilk very regularly, contact a lactation consultant. If you only occasionally pump and most feeds are "in the moment" then below are some handy tips for you.
When are the best moments to pump your milk?
Having trouble bottling?
1. Sit in a quiet, heated room. Somewhere where you will not be disturbed.
2. Take a warm shower or put a warm compress on your breasts before you start pumping.
3. Take some photos or a worn shirt from your little one. Or watch a cute movie of your child on your mobile phone. Thinking about your little one makes the milk flow better.
4. Carefully massage your breasts before you start pumping. For example, by making large circular movements with your fingers. Start on the outside. And work spirally in the direction of the nipple, constantly moving your fingers.
5. Caress your breasts from top to bottom, towards the nipple.
6. Roll your nipple between your fingers back and forth. Stimulation of the nipple makes the milk flow better.
7. Make sure the pump is positioned correctly.
8. Lean slightly forward.
9. Apply chest compression.
10. Drink something warm during the pumping, this will helo you relax.
11. Limit the use of nicotine, caffeine and alcohol.
How can you increase your production?
How much milk should I have?
Up to six months, a breastfed baby drinks about 120cc to 150cc breast milk per kilogram of body weight. Factor in the number of feedings your little one normally drinks with you in a day, and you will know how much he needs from your bottled milk.
If you store and give your milk in small portions of about 50cc, you can use these as supplementary feed. If your little one is still hungry after his bottle or cup, then simply heat up an extra portion. This way you prevent large quantities of breast milk from being poured down the sink if your little one just happened to be less hungry than usual that day.
Also see these information articles: · Breastfeeding · Benefits · Breastfeeding diapers · Changing food · Clustering · Duration · Empty days · Let down reflex · Menstruation · Milk channels and breast inflammation · Milk production · Nipples · Physical consequences · Positioning · Quickly stopping · Reasons to stop · Tandem feeding · Thrush