Back To Work Pumping Tips
Many mothers breastfeed their infants when they are born and then change them over to formula when their maternity leaves end and they need to go back to work. However, not only are babies healthier when breastfed as long as possible and working mothers can continue to supply breast milk for their infants and still work a full-time job. Here’s how to pump while at work and some tips for breastfeeding mothers when they return to work.
Before you return
Decide to pump breast milk before or right after the baby is born
By planning, you can get the breast pump and all of the accessories you need before your baby is born. Now, you don’t find yourself rushing around a day or two before work to get everything you need.
Prepare Your Milk Bag in Advance
Your milk/Pump bag should contain a pump, tubing, 2 or 3 sets of accessories (flanges, attachments, and membranes), milk storage bags, labels and felt pen to date the milk you pump. Burp cloth, Breast wipes to clean your breast after pumping, photo of baby, and if there is no place to store milk at work (a refrigerator you can use) then you will need a cooler and several ice packs. But bear in mind the storage guideline and try to work around the schedule and the resources you have.
Start Saving up Milk Before Returning to Work
Once your infant is two or three months of age, you should begin pumping one extra time during the day and storing the milk in the freezer so that you begin to build up a supply of milk. Our wide range of lactation bakes can help you boost your milk supply along with the food list you can follow to find your magic booster.
Talk to Your Employer about what you need to pump at work
At a minimum, you need a private room to use about 3 times a day with good lighting and electricity and a comfortable chair and a table to sit the pump on. If your office doesn’t provide a nursing room, look around for any available nursing rooms around your vicinity.
Have a Practice Work Day
Before you return to work you should have a practice day to make sure you are prepared for pumping at work. Try and practice doing what you would do once you return to work including taking your baby to daycare, feeding them before taking them and after the workday, in the evening, and before bed and then pumping on scheduled breaks during the day.
Pumping as close to your baby drinking timing
Your pumping schedule should follow your babies normal eating schedule as close as possible. Keeping your schedule close to your infants normal eating schedule will help slow leaking and help to ensure a steady supply of milk and more comfort when pumping.
You need to maintain your milk supply
You need to do everything you can to maintain to supply your milk supply including nursing your infant whenever you can. Getting in as many breastfeedings as possible since the baby feeding will help you maintain your milk supply. It is also important that you maintain your pumping schedule even if you only have a few minutes to pump because this will help to keep the milk flowing as well. Try your very best not to skip a pumping session. Do some power pumping if you have time.
To ease the transition, have another person (husband or partner, babysitter, grandparent) offer your expressed milk to your baby. Ideally, you should introduce the bottle or nipple no sooner than four weeks of age to ensure your supply is established, or at least two weeks before you return to work.
Once You Have Returned
Timing is everything
Know when to pump and when to breastfeed. Feeding your baby at the breast is ideal to keep up your supply and nurture them – so plan for that precious time. And remember to pump when you are away from your baby so your body gets the regular stimulation it needs to keep up your supply.
Plan when and where
Breastfeed just before you leave, when you return and before the baby’s bedtime. You may have to wake up earlier to get ready and still have time to nurse. You can nurse right when you return, depending on your schedule and when your caregiver has given the expressed milk. Feeding at the breast is the best way to drain your breasts and trigger more milk production so you may need to remind your caregiver not to feed your baby just before you return.
Take a deep breath
This will become second nature to you and your baby. We know that being a working, breastfeeding mom is not an easy task, but it’s well worth it. We’re also here to support you, so check in with us if you need some extra guidance. We are not LC, but as a mom, we have our fair share of experiences (laughs)
Always Pack Your Milk/Pump bag the night before
Keep a checklist of what you need and refer to it when checking your bag. In addition, you might want to keep a spare set of accessories at work to use in an emergency in case you forget an attachment or flange. Wet hand wipes; Extra clothing, such as a top or sweater, to leave at work in case of leaks; Nursing pads;
Pumping mummies are hungry mummies
Snacks and lunch, including high protein healthy foods and drinks to keep you hydrated.
While providing your baby with breast milk once you return to work may pose a few logistical problems. However, they can be overcome by following these tips and now, who says going back to work is hard?