When my children were babies I pumped breast milk for them since neither of them would latch properly. I just couldn’t get the hang of the whole breastfeeding thing and apparently neither could they. But I still wanted them to have all of the benefits of breast milk even though I couldn’t breast feed. We settled into a nice routine of a breastmilk and formula combo. At times though my milk supply would get low because I wasn’t exclusively pumping or breastfeeding. I wanted extra milk at times so I could freeze it for the future.
Here is a list of some of the things I tried to increase my breast milk supply:
- Double stimulating your breasts by breastfeeding (switching breasts often) or pumping at the same time. I used Medela Pump in Style with my youngest son. It worked great and was a huge time saver! I tried a
hand pump with my first son and all I mostly got was a deformed hand for a lot for work. My hand would end up hurting so bad that I would not fully empty my breasts which was interfering with my breastfeeding supply and demand.
- Try relaxing before you pump by massaging your breasts with warm compresses. Warm compresses and massages also help clogged milk ducts which is a common breastfeeding problem.
- Have your baby near you when you’re pumping. If you can’t be near your baby try to keep a picture and/or something with your babies scent on it next to you when you pump. Also, keeping a mental imagine of your baby in your head while you are pumping helps too.
- Keep your baby with you for all or some of the night for feedings.
- Eat oatmeal often.
- Nurse or pump before feeding solid foods to your baby.
- Try fenugreek. You will smell like maple syrup but it will be worth it.
- Make sure you are eating well and drinking a lot. You can’t expect to produce quality milk if you aren’t taking in nutrients and lots of fluids.
- Avoid pacifiers, bottles, ect. If you can breastfeed, breastfeed. Try to give all of your babies sucking needs from your breasts.
- Aim for 10-12 feeding sessions a day. Remember the more you breastfeed or pump the more milk you will produce.