This post was most recently updated on April 29th, 2019
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10 Pumping Tips for Working Moms
First, set a goal for yourself:
I recommend making it bite-sized so you can actually achieve it, and not get overwhelmed by a long commitment.
This is a very personal decision, and every mom will be unique!
My experience was that I wanted to EBF until my babes hit the 1 year mark. With 3 months of maternity leave, that equated to 9 months of pumping at work. UGH!
For you, it could mean ’til they turn 6 months and are introduced to solids, or 9 months, 12 months, and beyond! (Note: I continued to nurse while at home but I dumped the pump after 12 months- yay!)
With a lot of determination, I met my goal with both my boys, but I’m not gonna lie, it was not easy. As a result, by baby #2, I had established a well-oiled system at the office.
10 Pumping Tips
1. Ask for flexibility from your manager: If possible, see if you can work from home one day a week. In effect, this can dramatically cut down on the number of pumps and your stress!
2. Inquire about the Lactation room options. This may already be set up, but you can also be proactive in improving them.
3. Determine your schedule:
- As an example, for a typical 9 hour day away, you may need to express 3 times, 9:00, 11:30, 2:00
- Some moms only need 2 times
- If you have a long commute, take advantage of the drive by pumping in your ride!
- If your baby will be at daycare or home close to work, consider going to meet them at lunch to nurse and skip the pump!Schedule: This is also unique to you- depending on your output and baby’s needs.
- Excellent pump! (make sure it’s new and tuned up, or rent a hospital grade version) My work also had one in the Lactation Room that every mom could use- you only need the attachment!
- Horns – size that fits you best, there are multiple to try, so if one doesn’t feel right, size up!
- Pumping bra – I only got one with the 2nd and I sure wish I had one the first time. Also, you don’t have to wear it all day, just slip it on when you need to use it! I loved this bra
- Pump directly into freezer bags or bottles and consolidate to the right ounces. This system has an adapter to pump into the bags
- Nursing pads, if needed: the last thing you need is to be on display! The convenience of disposable is nice, but I also loved organic cotton pads
- Balm or cream, my favorite was Motherlove
- Cooler with ice packs: try an insulated lunch pack that is roomy enough for the bottles and your horns. Tip: By keeping these cold in between sessions, they don’t need to be washed.
5. Technique: I scoured for tips to get the most volume.
- Include power pumping and massage to maximize output
6. Supplements: Fenugreek or Malunggay for a boost, I went for this one every time
7. Water! Hydration is basic.
8. Vitamin D – for you and drops to add in the bottle. Excellent for warding off illness! For Baby, Carlson’s
9. Stash – before returning to work it can be incredibly advantageous for you if you can add in some pumps to build a stash while you are producing a lot in the beginning. You may also find that once baby is sleeping through the night that it helps to add a pumping session before bed. Keep them organized by date in a tub in the freezer.
10. Inspiration! Pumping at work will consume your breaks, so plan how you want to use it: Read, play a game, but most helpful for boosting output: swoon over cute pics of your precious little one!
There! You can do it! You will be the pumping queen!
Create a plan for success and arm yourself to meet your pumping goals! What else do you do? Drop me a comment. Also see these helpful ideas for spending quality time when you are home with your littles.