Pumping: 5 Tips to Make Pumping Easier
By: Sarah Long, IBCLC
- Relax. Find a secure, private location where you won't be interrupted if your are pumping in a public space. Ensuring you won't be interrupted will help you relax and express more milk. Breast massage before pumping can help facilitate a let down also.
- Do your Flanges Fit? Making sure you have a proper fit can make for a more pleasant pumping experience. Here is a good tutorial.
- Don't pay attention to how much milk is coming out: cover your flanges with a nursing cover or towel and focus your attention on something else. Sure you wanna make sure your not spilling milk out of the bag or bottle but don't spend your entire pumping session watching the milk come out. Paying attention to how much or how little is being pumped can cause undue stress. Stress can lead to less milk. My favorite distraction was photos and videos of my baby on my smart phone. Watching her helped me make more milk.
- Create a Pumping Basket: Keeping the things you'll need in one location can help make getting ready to pump faster. Keep water, a towel, a snack and extra pumping supplies handy. Keeping everything in one basket that you can grab when it time to pump means you won't have to interrupt your pumping session for water or a snack.
- Pumping is an appointment: Pumping at consistent times throughout the day or week is best. Schedule your pumping sessions on your work calendar and don't double book yourself. Pumping is important not only for your child but also your comfort throughout the day.
- Ask for HELP if you need it: There are lots of resources out there to help. Visit your local Breastfeeding USA or Le Leche League meeting or contact an IBCLC.