Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Pumping: Increasing Volume of Breastmilk

Our previous post gave information on how to increase your milk supply while pumping,  In addition, there are ways to increase the milk output from the supply mothers already have. 

1.  Massage While Pumping.  Using a hands-free pumping bra or using the pledge of allegiance hold pictured here can give you the freedom to massage your breast while pumping.  This can assist your milk output provided that you are doing it in a relaxed manor and not watching the bottles anxiously.

Mother using pledge of allegiance hold with Ameda Elite Breast Pump.

2. Reposition Breast Flanges.  Instead of just sitting and double pumping for 10-15 minutes, take advantage of the anatomy of your body.  You can engage more milk ducts if you re-position your breast flanges a.k.a. breast shields every 3-5 minutes during your pumping session.

3.  Pump Up the Volume.  Studies on mothers of premature babies show that listening therapy increases their output by 2-3 times. The most effective form of listening therapy includes verbal encouragement plus music.  One way to accomplish this is to have hubby record encouraging words and/or relaxing music.  It doesn't have to be elevator music, just music that is relaxing to you.

Study published in Advances in Neonatal Care, Douglas Keith, April 2012. 

4. Visualize the Prize.  Have a picture of your baby taped to your breast pump bag, on your desk or table by where you are pumping.  This will help milk output much more than staring at the bottles.

5.  Sense of Smell.  Another way to aide with let-down is to have a receiving blanket that has been on the baby or nursing scarf to drape around your neck or even to cover the bottles while you are pumping.

Remember, your expressed milk is liquid love.  You are leaving a part of yourself when you can't be with your baby and you are doing a great job, mama!

Happy Nurturing,

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