Breast-feeding and pumping: 7 tips for successBreast-feeding is a commitment — and your efforts are worthwhile. If you're pumping, follow simple tips for maintaining your milk supply, from pumping often to drinking plenty of fluids.
By Mayo Clinic Staff
Breast-feeding is based on supply and demand. The more you breast-feed your baby — or pump while you're away from your baby — the more milk your breasts will produce. Consider seven tips for pumping success.
Stress can hinder your body's natural ability to release breast milk. Find a quiet place to pump. It might help to massage your breasts or use warm compresses. You might want to think about your baby, look at a picture of your baby or listen to relaxing music.
2. Pump often
The more you pump, the more milk you'll produce — especially if you're using a high-quality pump. If you're working full time, try to pump for 15 minutes every few hours during the workday. If you can, pump both breasts simultaneously. A double breast pump helps stimulate milk production while reducing pumping time by half.
3. When you're with your baby, breast-feed on demand
The more you breast-feed your baby when you're together, the greater your supply will be when you pump. Depending on your schedule, try more-frequent evening, early morning or weekend feedings. If you have a predictable schedule, you might ask your baby's caregivers to avoid feeding your baby during the last hour of care — so that you can breast-feed your baby as soon as you arrive.
Apr. 07, 2012
See more In-depth
- Your guide to breastfeeding. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office on Women's Health. http://www.womenshealth.gov/publications/our-publications/breastfeeding-guide. Accessed Jan. 9, 2012.
- Stuebe A, et al. Principles of medication use during lactation. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Jan. 9, 2012.
- Mennella J, et al. Breastfeeding and smoking: Short-term effects on infant feeding and sleep. Pediatrics. 2007;120:497.
- Riordan J, et al. Breastfeeding and Human Lactation. 4th ed. Sudbury, Mass.: Jones and Bartlett Publishers; 2010:551.
- Samet JM, et al. Secondhand smoke exposure: Effects in children. http://www.uptodate.com/index.html. Accessed Jan. 9, 2012.
- Enger L, et al. Patient information: Breast pumps. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Jan. 9, 2012.