While it might seem daunting at first, pumping breast milk should not be a complicated task. All you will need is the essential pumping tips, and you will be good to go. Typically, most mothers find the need to pump breast milk, especially when they need to go back to work. A breast pump comes in handy to help mothers express milk for their babies, thus ensuring a healthy meal. Also, this pumping machine enables you to establish a backup stash for your freezer. Relieve engorgement and maintain a stable milk supply. You will find pumping easy and practical with the right pumping machine, such as a portable breast pump.       

When Should I Begin Pumping?

Generally, there is no specific time to start pumping. Therefore, you should begin pumping as soon as it makes sense to you. Also, the right time for pumping will depend on your specific situation as a nursing mom. 

Some new mothers will begin pumping breast milk immediately after the baby is born, right in the birthing center or the hospital. This helps encourage milk supply and initiate breastfeeding. It is best to begin pumping early, especially if you cannot nurse your infant at birth. This includes situations such as when a baby has special needs or is premature. 

On the other hand, some mothers will wait a few weeks before they begin pumping their breast milk. At the beginning of breastfeeding, there is often little time between lactation and nursing sessions to pump. Therefore, experts will advise you to hold back giving your baby a feeding bottle until the breastfeeding process is well established. Nevertheless, most babies go back and forth between breast and bottle from birth; thus, you should do what favors you most. 

By the time your infant is about six weeks old, breastfeeding should already be well-established. As a result, you will probably have sufficient time between the feeding sessions to pump extra milk and store it for future use. It is advisable to begin pumping 2-3 weeks beforehand if you plan to return to work. This will ensure you have enough milk storage for the baby. 

How Often and for How Long Should I Pump?

The amount of time you spend pumping and the severalty of pumping varies considerably depending on various factors. For example, if you are pumping at work to cover the missed breastfeeding session, it is best to be on a schedule similar to your baby’s feeding back at home. This helps keep the milk supply strong and aligned with the baby’s demand. If you are trying to increase your milk supply, you should pump between the nursing sessions when you are with the baby at home. 

Take about 20 minutes of pumping to ensure you get enough milk supply. Again, express the milk until the supply slows down and your breasts feel well drained. Always use fitting flange inserts for breast pumps to boost comfort and ensure no spillage. Also, ensure you clean them after every use to prevent bacterial infections.