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Old 03-31-2008, 07:40 PM   #1
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Getting NOTHING when I pump...

...does this mean I am having a supply issue? Here's my story: I work three times per week each for 3-4 hours at a time (each different times of day). I can't pump while I'm at work so I try to pump beforehand and afterward. I'm not great at being disciplined about pumping so I don't always make up the amount that my LO has eaten from a bottle while I'm gone but I get at least a few ounces most of the time. But my freezer stash is nearing the end and the past week or so I've tried to be more diligent in pumping every morning after the first feeding and then before/after work depending on the timing of everything. So tonight I fed my LO (he's 5 months old if that matters) at 3:30 before I left and then at 7:45 when I returned. My DH gave him a 4 oz bottle while I was gone. So after the 7:45pm bedtime feeding I tried pumping and from the right side I got literally 2 drops and from the left side 1 ounce. It is the normal routine that I would have fed him around the time that DH gave him the bottle, so I would think my body would have some extra in there. Does this mean I am not making enough?

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Old 03-31-2008, 07:50 PM   #2
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Re: Getting NOTHING when I pump...

Not necessarily. When you aren't working, your days off, how is your supply? Is he satisfied? Do you feel full at the end of the workday? Have you thought about pumping more often to increase your supply? Or taking fenugreek?
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Old 03-31-2008, 07:53 PM   #3
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Re: Getting NOTHING when I pump...

I was this same way with my last son. With my others I could pump any time, and have plenty, but this last time was different. Luckily I work at home, so it really wasn't an issue. It would have been nice to pump some so I could go out for an evening though. I finally just gave up trying to pump.
Hopefully someone else will have some answers for you. I just wanted to let you know you are not alone!
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Old 03-31-2008, 07:57 PM   #4
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Re: Getting NOTHING when I pump...

I had to start out by pumping when lo was nursing on the other side. After I got used to the pump that way, it got way better!
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Old 03-31-2008, 08:03 PM   #5
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Re: Getting NOTHING when I pump...

When you're pumping, let the pump run for a few minutes even after the last drops, that will stimulate more production. Also, the best time of the day to pump is first thing in the morning, that's usually when most women have the highest supply.

How soon after his bedtime feeding did you pump? You nursed him at 7:45, right? So it may have been that you were pumping before your body had produced more milk. If it's important to you to keep giving him breastmilk, then you probably should start pumping consistently.
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Old 03-31-2008, 08:03 PM   #6
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Re: Getting NOTHING when I pump...

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I had to start out by pumping when lo was nursing on the other side. After I got used to the pump that way, it got way better!
I've heard others talk of doing this but I can't imagine it working for me because if I talk at all when LO's nursing he freaks out and if my DH talks he is fine with that but is very distracted and will stop eating. So I have always thought pumping while he's nursing would be impossible. Do you literally do it while he is eating? How do you hold the pump and everything?

My work days are Mondays 4-7:30pm, Weds. 3:30-6pm, and Fridays 8:30am-12:30pm. Sometimes on Weds it's not an issue if he doesn't have to eat while I'm gone depending on the timing of everything. Or on that day I pump right before I leave so he eats that amount. But Mondays I always miss one evening feeding and Fridays I miss him eating around 10am. Is it possible that my body knows the day of the week and is used to missing on that day? DH suggested this and I thought that could not be possible. But maybe I'm wrong.

I have never tried fenugreek but I have eaten a lot of oatmeal and that seems to help if I eat it every day. I missed this morning's bowl of oatmeal because we were on the go.
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Old 03-31-2008, 08:09 PM   #7
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Re: Getting NOTHING when I pump...

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Originally Posted by abbycadabby View Post
Not necessarily. When you aren't working, your days off, how is your supply? Is he satisfied? Do you feel full at the end of the workday? Have you thought about pumping more often to increase your supply? Or taking fenugreek?
Just to answer this question too, on my days off I feel like things are fine, I feel a letdown usually (this has gotten less dramatic of a feeling as he's gotten older but I think that's normal and he seems to be swallowing a lot). I used to feel more full when I would miss a feeding but again that may be because I don't feel the letdown as strongly every time. The question of "Is he satisfied?" is a good question because he is in one sense, like he's happy at the end of a feeding most of the time. But in general as he's getting older I feel like he is sucking so much harder and he seems antsy more often when he's eaten only a short time ago. I did give him a bit of avacado starting last week just to experiment with solids. I don't think he needs a lot of solids at this point but I wondered if it would help make him seem a little more content between feedings. I feed him about every 2.5 hours (not by the clock just that's what he seems to do) so I don't think feeding more often would be possible for my body!
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Old 03-31-2008, 08:11 PM   #8
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Re: Getting NOTHING when I pump...

Quote:
Originally Posted by kristenkan52 View Post
I've heard others talk of doing this but I can't imagine it working for me because if I talk at all when LO's nursing he freaks out and if my DH talks he is fine with that but is very distracted and will stop eating. So I have always thought pumping while he's nursing would be impossible. Do you literally do it while he is eating? How do you hold the pump and everything?

My work days are Mondays 4-7:30pm, Weds. 3:30-6pm, and Fridays 8:30am-12:30pm. Sometimes on Weds it's not an issue if he doesn't have to eat while I'm gone depending on the timing of everything. Or on that day I pump right before I leave so he eats that amount. But Mondays I always miss one evening feeding and Fridays I miss him eating around 10am. Is it possible that my body knows the day of the week and is used to missing on that day? DH suggested this and I thought that could not be possible. But maybe I'm wrong.

I have never tried fenugreek but I have eaten a lot of oatmeal and that seems to help if I eat it every day. I missed this morning's bowl of oatmeal because we were on the go.
I had a hands free kit for my pump! I literally did pump while she was nursing. Just at first to get used to it. I pumped like a mad woman at first. She'd eat, I'd pump shortly after. This boosted supply AND got me used to the pump. I had over 250 oz when I went back to work full time.
Good luck!
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Old 03-31-2008, 08:39 PM   #9
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Re: Getting NOTHING when I pump...

Quote:
Originally Posted by kristenkan52 View Post
I've heard others talk of doing this but I can't imagine it working for me because if I talk at all when LO's nursing he freaks out and if my DH talks he is fine with that but is very distracted and will stop eating. So I have always thought pumping while he's nursing would be impossible. Do you literally do it while he is eating? How do you hold the pump and everything?
My son has always been a very sensitive nurser, but I was able to pump on one side while nursing him on the other if I sat on the bed and used pillows to set him up in sort of a football hold type position, that gave me enough space to arrange the pumping stuff on the other breast. I think part of the key to this was that I did it in an otherwise quiet, dark room.

I've never had much luck pumping if I did it too soon after my kids nursed on that side. So I usually found it most helpful to nurse either when my baby hadn't nursed on one side for a while, or when they hadn't nursed at all for some time (such as after they'd been asleep for two or three hours).

Incidentally, milk production slows down when your breasts are full, which probably explains what happened tonight.
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Old 04-01-2008, 07:18 AM   #10
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Re: Getting NOTHING when I pump...

The evening is the least productive time of the day to pump.

2-6am is most productive, followed by 6-10 etc

What time do you go to bed? I would pump every night just before your bedtime – (so as far away from your last feeding as possible)

Then, I’d get up an hour before your lo is supposed to wake up and pump. Pump for 5min after you see the last drop of milk.

Drink as much water as you can, eat as much oatmeal as you can.

You might also think about pumping on the way home from work depending on what your commute is like. There are some risks of pumping in the car but I did it every day to/from work for nearly 2yrs w only 2 issues.


also what kind of pump are you using? that can affect how much you get alot too.
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