Breastfeeding can be fun and an exciting process for most mothers, but we need to take that break once in a while. But how soon after pumping can I breastfeed?
And if you are about to head back to work, pumping milk and storing it for your baby will be your daily routine, as you still want her to enjoy the liquid gold.
This is where pumping your milk becomes very important. However, the question remains, how soon after pumping can I breastfeed?
The pump has been designed to make it super easy for you to pump and store this fresh milk for your little one.
But this is not all as it can also help with milk supply, relieve engorgement caused by the buildup of milk, or just keeping some back up in your freezer. And at this point it might be important to know how to tell if breast milk is bad.
The process of expressing this milk might be a daunting task for the first couple of times, with all the suction and tubes involved with the whole activity, but once you get the hang of it, you can easily do it as you drink your cup of tea.
When should the pumping start?
This should start when you feel it is the right time for you to begin pumping; all this depends on your particular situation.
Some mothers might start as early as in the hospital or the birthing center if they are trying to initiate breastfeeding or encourage the milk supply to begin flowing. But there are natural ways on how to increase milk supply fast.
Starting to pump early on is useful if you cannot nurse your baby for the first couple of days; maybe your baby was premature or might be having some special needs.
As for other moms, they might wait for a couple of weeks before they start pumping.
And if you are having a good flow of milk and baby and you are doing well, you should hold off giving her the bottle.
According to lactation experts, holding off the bottle helps establish a breastfeeding routine and proper latching.
Try to hold off for the first 4 -6 weeks; by this time, both you and the baby are good with the whole concept of breastfeeding.
How to begin pumping
You should take a few steps to ensure your pumping session goes well and produces as much milk as possible.
To begin with, your hands need to be thoroughly clean when handling your baby’s milk.
Ensure you are relaxed
Before starting the breastfeeding session, ensure you are relaxed, find the perfect spot, and have some cushions around you.
Try and have a nice and quiet spot, clear your mind, and take a few breaths to have your body connected with its surroundings.
Do a small massage
Massage your breasts gently, or use a warm compress as this will encourage the letdown.
As a result, this will make the pumping process easy and less uncomfortable.
Hold your baby close
Sometimes your body will need some extra encouragement. So how about holding your baby close?
This can be in person or just in your imagination. A cuddle from your little one could quicken the letdown.
If you are away from home, try looking at a photo of your little one, it will immediately trigger your brain to release the breast milk.
Ensure it is well centered
Before you start pumping, center the nipple in the flange to ensure you have created a vacuum. Once you start pumping, the suction will quickly help express milk.
How soon after pumping can I breastfeed?
Life as a mother, a wife, and one chasing after her career involves a lot of scheduling; this is the same thing when it comes to pumping and breastfeeding.
If you are doing both pumping and nursing, you need to ensure you keep a close eye on your supply.
You don’t want to increase milk production or even forget a session that might impact your supply. So with all this, you might be wondering how soon can you breastfeed then.
The best thing or the best way to go about this is by scheduling the breastfeeding and pumping sessions. Mayo clinic recommends breastfeeding 30 – 60 minutes after pumping.
This small break will give your body the needed break to produce the next supply.
Yes, your body is currently a milk production machine. But did you know if you over pump and nurse, it signals to your body that you need more milk, thus producing more than required?
Even in breast milk, too much is also bad.
Breastmilk is usually produced on demand, so the more you pump or your baby nurses, the more milk your body will produce; what we are looking for is having a balance.
Not too much or too little, just enough to keep your baby feed.
But this is not something you should stress about; your body can strike a balance as long as the right signals are being sent.
The benefits of pumping while nursing
Mums pump for numerous reasons, from increase milk supply and simply relieving engorged breasts.
And if you are one to pump and store your milk, it is a good way of ensuring your baby always has something to feed on. Regardless of the reason you have decided to pump, there are a few benefits you will be able to enjoy.
For working moms, they will be able to go back to work with no stress and still give the nutrients this liquid gold can offer.
Being a mother can, at times, be exhausting, and we need that small break once in a while.
It makes it easy with stored milk as you are not the only person responsible for feeding your precious angel.
You will easily build a milk supply.
As I mentioned above, your body produces milk according to the demand; thus, when you pump, you tell your body you need a little more milk than it is producing.
Breastfeeding your child is not something all mothers get the opportunity to enjoy, for one reason or another.
And with pumping your milk, you can donate to other mothers who want their little ones to enjoy the benefits this liquid gold can offer.
How long should I be pumping?
Now that you know how soon after pumping you can nurse let’s find out how long you should pump. All this depends on your goal.
If it’s to increase milk supply, try and pump between your nursing sessions.
And if you are at work, try to pump milk that can be used later; try as much as possible to pump during the same times as your feeding sessions.
When you are pumping, ensure you do this for at least 15 – 20 minutes, this will help get a good amount of breast milk.
And for some women, this might not be enough; they could go a little longer, like 30 minutes; whatever the case, the longer, the better to ensure you are emptying your breasts when you pump.
You know it is time to stop when the milk starts to slow down, and you feel your breasts have been well-drained.