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nursingbras Archives - Lactation Link

3 pumping tips to get more milk out in less time

By | Breastfeeding, Breastfeeding support, breastfeeding tips, motherhood, Recommended Products

Okay pumping mamas, this post is all about you!  Whether you are pumping to store just a little extra for a night out or you’re a full-time working and pumping mom, having the know-how to get the most out of your pumping sessions is so valuable.  Our lives as mothers are so busy that truly the minutes count!  So if I were to share a few tips that may shave a few minutes off your pumping routine, you’d be all ears, right? I get questions and comments all the time from pumping moms like this:

“Can I pump just a few times a day but for longer periods and still keep up my milk supply?” or

“I have a really good milk supply and don’t have the time to pump, I’ll be okay going 5-6 hours between pumping sessions, right?!”

{Clip and Pump hands-free pumping accessory}

My response is always the same.  Frequent breast stimulation (every 2-3 hours you’re away from baby), is what maintains your milk production.  It’s based off supply and demand.  So you can’t get away with pumping less often but you can make your pumping sessions as efficient as possible.  Who doesn’t want to get more milk out in less time?!  Keep in mind, as baby gets older and is feeding less often, you’ll want to pump at least as often as your baby is breastfeeding.

I know that you don’t want to spend your life hooked up to a machine that goes ee-ah-ee-ah for any longer than you need to!  I remember pumping when I went back to work as a labor and delivery nurse and I was a little overwhelmed when I started but pretty soon I had a system down and I flew through my pumping routine!  Today I’m partnering with Bravado Designs to “hook you up” with 3 tips to help you get the most milk out in the least amount of time during your pumping sessions. Let’s be honest, we’ve got other things to do, right?!   

#1 – Get familiar with your pump and it’s parts

If possible, get to know your pump before you ever need to use it.  It can be frustrating trying to figure out how to work something for the first time when you need to use it right then!  Becoming familiar with it a little while in advance can help ease any of those worries and create confidence with the pump.  Get the pump out of its box, read the instructions, take apart the parts and put them back together a few times, plug it in, power it on and off, and learn any of the functions.  

Just for you: Did you know you can get a free breast pump through your insurance?  Click here to get it ordered.

Cheat sheet: The flange is the circular part of the pump that touches your breast and you want to be sure you have the right size!  When you start pumping, check to be sure there’s just a little bit of space all the way around your nipple as it goes in and out.  You can also book an online consult with us to make sure you have the right size!    

#2 – Go hands-free

Did you know that pumping alone just provides suction, but when a baby is breastfeeding they are applying suction plus compression?  So pumping by itself can leave out compression altogether. There’s a way around this! Research shows that using your hands (doing breast massage + compression) while your pumping gets the most milk out.  This is where going hands-free with your nursing bra comes in handy! The clip and pump hands-free pumping accessory from Bravado Designs is a great option because it easily attaches to any nursing bra so you don’t have to completely switch bras every time you need to pump.  

Here’s how it works:

Just for you: You can get 15% off your total purchase with the code ‘LLINK15’ on bravadodesigns.com. They also have great maternity and nursing bras and tanks.  Here’s a few other posts that show some of my favorite nursing bras: Best Nursing bras and tanks || Nursing bra myths debunked

Cheat sheet: I have step-by-step video tutorials on hands-on pumping inside my Pumping and Storing Breastmilk online course.  Want a sneak peek inside my courses?  Try my free mini-course here.  

#3 – Establish a routine

Set reminders for your pumping breaks!  It’s easy to get into work or travel mode and forget about the clock!  Setting a reminder on your phone for specific times can help you remember to pump every 2-3 hours.  Frequency in pumping is the most important thing when it comes to maintaining your milk supply when you’re away from your baby.  

Pumping: Use the hands-on pumping technique for 10-15 minutes (depending on how much time you have).  Use the clip and pump accessory to save you time.

Washing the parts: A quick wash with hot, soapy water for the parts that come in contact with your breastmilk is recommended by the CDC.  If you’re using a shared pump, wipe it down with a disinfectant.  You can let your pump parts air dry on a paper towel.

Storing the milk:  If you’re at home, remember that breastmilk is good for 5 hours at room temperature, so don’t feel like you have to rush it to the fridge if it’s the middle of the night.  When you go to store it, you always want to label it with the date (you’ll always use the oldest milk first), and if you’re using a shared fridge (like at the hospital or work), you’ll want to add your initials, too.  As soon as you can, get it stored either in the fridge or freezer, not on the doors and as far back as possible.

Cheat sheet: In a pinch and don’t have time for a full 10-15 min pumping break?  A 2-5 min hand expression session over a sink or with a towel on your lap will help until you can get your pumping session in.

I hope these 3 tips on pumping were helpful!  Thanks to Bravado Designs for partnering on this post.  You can get 15% off your total purchase on BravadoDesigns.com with the code ‘LLINK15’.  Share your pumping tips with me in the comments — would love to hear!

Thanks for stopping by,

Lindsey Shipley, RN, IBCLC

5 Nursing Bra Myths De-bunked

By | Breastfeeding, Breastfeeding support, breastfeeding tips, Recommended Products

 

Finding a comfortable bra that provides shape in any stage of life is like finding gold in the sand, am I right?  A great bra can make a huge difference in our comfort and our confidence! Or how about one less thing to worry about when you’re pregnant?  Or something pretty and functional to put a little magic into the ups and downs that come with the postpartum time, or as we like to call it around here, the fourth trimester?  

Maybe you’ve overheard things from other moms like “{*Sigh*}…It is what it is” or “You just have to get through it” when it comes to maternity bras during pregnancy or nursing bras postpartum.  There are a lot of myths out there and today I’ve partnered with Bravado Designs to help shed some light on all this boobie talk and de-bunk anything you’ve heard that you don’t need to worry about!  Read through to get a peek into their newest styles and colors, as well as some of their tried-and-true staples, and a Lactation Link exclusive promo code I begged them to give you!

Ok so here they are, 5 Nursing Bra Myths De-bunked!

MYTH #1 There’s no way around it, nursing bras are U-G-L-Y!

De-bunked: Need I say more than this image?

This line is sooooo beautiful!  The colors are so complimentary for all skin tones and don’t resemble a traditional, boring old nursing bra AT ALL!  Let’s say you’re like the majority of women and are caught still wearing their nursing bra even a year after baby has weaned, there’s no shame when you have one of these beautiful styles on.

{The Invisible nursing bra}

Lindsey’s recommendations:

My favorite for everyday wear: The invisible

Wear with your favorite tee: Buttercup

Sleep bras: Ballet and the Bodysilk Seamless

MYTH #2 It’s impossible to achieve shape while your breastfeeding

De-bunked: Have you heard of or experienced the uni-boob? (Asking for a friend.)

The official definition describes the breasts being lumped together (typically by a spandex-y nursing sports bra type-thing) and results in your chest looking more like one large breast rather than two.  Hang on (get it), it’s not a lost cause! With the right fit and structure that provides support but separation (your breasts prefer their own room!), you can still have a shape in your bustline when you’re pregnant or breastfeeding.  

Lindsey’s recommendations:

Going out or back to work: The Belle Underwire

Everyday shape: The invisible and The Buttercup

MYTH #3 Wearing an underwire while breastfeeding is a big no-no

De-bunked: It’s been said, “An underwire will cause mastitis.”  Mastitis is inflammation of the breast tissue like plugged ducts or a breast infection.  I’m here to tell you: the underwire isn’t necessarily the culprit! The real issue is a bra with a poor fit – this could mean with or without an underwire!  If the fabric or underwire of your bra feels like it’s pushing deep into your ribs, or your breast tissue is spilling out the top of the bra, it doesn’t fit right.  That poor fit can restrict blood flow and block milk ducts leading to other issues. The bottom line is: don’t be afraid to wear an underwire while breastfeeding if it fits right!  

Try this on: The Belle Underwire 

Check this outBravado designs FIT video

MYTH #4 Pumping is an ordeal even when you’re wearing a nursing bra

De-bunked: Pumping takes time and let’s face it, time is a commodity for moms with an infant!  In my online breastfeeding classes, I teach how to get the most milk out in the least amount of time…it involves being hands-free while you pump.  Bravado has a great solution – their “Clip and Pump” hands-free accessory which connects to any nursing bra so you can quickly get your pump going – without changing all your clothes several times a day!  

Throw this in your pumping bag: Clip and Pump accessory

MYTH #5 Nursing Moms just have to “get by” with discomfort during breastfeeding

De-bunked:  If you’re like me, when you get home, your first item of business might be to take your bra off so you can relax!  The great thing I’ve found about the Bravado Designs bras are they are designed to fit like an extension of you, so you may not even think about your bra anymore!  Keep in mind that your size may change a bit from your pregnancy into the first several days postpartum to when your milk supply regulates (around two weeks postpartum).  There are several styles I feel can grow with you and others you may want to wait until your supply regulates or plan on buying two sizes in.

Sleep bra: Ballet, The Original

Everyday: Invisible, Belle, Bodysilk Seamless

Thanks for stopping by today!  All my Lactation Link mamas can get 15% off of their entire purchase at Bravado Designs with the code ‘LLINK15’.

Questions about maternity or nursing bras?  Leave them in the comments below!  How about getting started with my free breastfeeding course?  Sign up here.

xo,

 

 

 

 

 

Lindsey Shipley, RN, BSN, IBCLC

 

*This post has been in partnership with Bravado Designs.  All opinions are my own.