Lorna C. Aliperti, APRN, IBCLC
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Pumping Ideas

Which Pump?

For more than occasional pumping, most women prefer the Medela or Ameda hospital grade rental pumps, Medela Pump in Style or Ameda Purely Yours. For intermittent pumping, Medela’s Harmony hand pump and the Isis are good.

How To’s

If the baby isn’t breastfeeding, pump approximately 8 times a day, including one pumping at night—between 12am and 5am—when prolactin levels are highest (prolactin is the milk-production hormone). Frequent pumping is most important during the first two to three weeks because prolactin receptors are being established.

Pumping both breasts at the same time increases prolactin levels—and saves time. Pumping time can vary from 5-20 minutes total or on each side if you are single pumping. Give yourself time to get used to the pump—you may only get a little the first times you try. Don’t stare at the pump and worry about how much you’re getting. This can slow your flow– try to relax–watch TV or read, whatever works for you.

Use a heating pad or shower before pumping to help open the milk ducts. Try massaging your breasts with olive oil before pumping—this can promote letdown and reduce friction from the pump.

Once a day, to fully empty your breasts, pump—then take a break or even a shower—and pump once more for five minutes. This will protect against plugged ducts and help keep your supply up.

Tips

It is not necessary to wash the kit every time (for a healthy full term baby). Put the parts in a ziploc bag in the refrigerator between pumpings. Wash once a day. Hands free pumping is easier. You can buy products such as the Easy Expression Bustier, cut holes in an old sports crop top or pregnancy bra (mark and cut out over the nipples), or use rubber bands to help keep them in place. This will leave you free to adjust vacuum, compress and massage the breasts for extra let-down or to manage plugged ducts, or read, go online, etc.

Most women produce more milk in the morning and less in the late afternoon and evening. If the breast shield on the pump is uncomfortable, you may need a different size—Medela has several breast shield sizes larger and one smaller than the one that comes with the pump. These are called Personal Fit Breastshields. They also have SoftFit breastshields that are flexible and promote letdown which some moms prefer.

If your baby isn’t removing milk effectively, keep nursing times short or skip them. You won’t be able to pump in addition to nursing for extended periods eight or more times a day. It is milk removal that increases supply.

Soapy Milk

Before storing more than a few bottles of milk, test one frozen bag or bottle.  Occasionally women have high levels of lipase in their milk, an enzyme which can make it taste soapy or unpleasant after it is stored.  This is fine if baby drinks it, but if your baby rejects the milk, you can scald it–heat to approximately 180 degrees or until bubbles appear around the edge of the pan before storing to solve this problem.  More information can be found here:  “When stored milk smells soapy or rancid”,   Or in this helpful article from a mom who dealt with the problem herself — “Battling and Resolving Excess Lipase”

Increasing supply

Power Pumping

Power pumping is used to increase the mother’s milk supply. It simulates the stimulus that a natural growth spurt puts on the breast—more vigorous, more frequent and longer suckling to trigger increased release of prolactin from the pituitary gland. It can be repeated as often as once every seven days and usually produces extra milk within 48 hours of finishing one cycle.

  • Pick one hour, three days or nights in a row.
  • Pump 10 minutes then rest 10 minutes.
  • Pump another 10 minutes, then rest 10 minutes.
  • Pump an additional 10 minutes.
  • This provides approximately 30 minutes of pumping in a 50 minute period.

Power Pumping Boot Camp

Some moms prefer to concentrate their efforts for a few days and power pump at every pumping before returning to their regular pumping schedule.

Marlene Ferguson

Lorna was a godsend. Michael was losing weight and no one at the hospital was able to help him to latch on. She got him started breastfeeding and then showed me how to do it myself. He’s now gaining an ounce a day.

Marlene Ferguson

Henry M. Rascoff, MD, Riverside Pediatrics

There are extremely few specialists to whom I refer patients that I hear 100 percent glowing remarks about. You are at the very top of that short list, and the one and only lactation consultant whose name crosses my lips when a private referral is needed. Thank you so much for the superb care you provide.

Henry M. Rascoff, MD, Riverside Pediatrics

Kathryn Laird

I really appreciate your help, Lorna. Things started turning around after your visit. Although I had already reduced my milk intake, eliminating all remaining dairy had an enormous impact on Avery’s issues, and really solved our colic problems pretty much right off the bat. One thing that was very telling is that about a month later, I had about 24 hours where I decided I’d try milk again, and we had sour cream, cheese and whatnot…We had a miserable 24 hours and I actually threw away three bottles that I had pumped because it was just so bad. I immediately went back on soy milk. Thanks again.

Kathryn Laird

Susan Kunin

Lorna, I sincerely thank you. You made what was a difficult beginning, one of the most wonderful things I have ever done. You are caring, knowledgeable and always there for moral support. I have recommended you to many new moms, and they all have similar success stories. I truly appreciate everything you have done for us.

Susan Kunin

Abbey Fox

I can’t thank you enough for everything–your encouragement, patience and enthusiasm–without you this would have been over LONG ago. Harrison thanks you as well!

Abbey Fox

Eliza Miller

Lorna’s help was invaluable in breastfeeding my twins. She helped me through the early days of dealing with tiny, sleepy babies, sore nipples, engorgement, and oversupply, and I found myself calling on her again in later months as I had recurring plugged ducts and milk blebs. Her advice was always practical, easy to follow and yielded immediate postiive results. Today I’m still nursing my fourteen-month-olds–thank you Lorna!

Eliza Miller

Cathy Grammon

The service and products were great. Lorna was especially helpful during that first difficult week. She gave me the moral support I needed to keep going.

Cathy Grammon

Elizabeth Gallo

Lorna is professional, knowledgeable and caring. She saw me and my baby through some of the toughest weeks of breastfeeding. I felt comfortable calling her whenever I needed help and she was always there. Without her expertise and support I highly doubt we would be nursing as happily as we are today. She was an indispensable asset to me.

Elizabeth Gallo

Jonathan Sollinger, M.D., Willows Pediatric

I have frequently referred patients to Lorna and been very pleased with the results. She responds quickly, the moms like her, and she is flexible and knowledgeable in her treatment of both mother and baby.

Jonathan Sollinger, M.D., Willows Pediatric

Amy Mora

Lorna, you are wonderful. You saved my child from having to go on formula. I was able to continue breastfeeding. (I had yeast and it was horrible!)

Amy Mora