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When and how to start expressing

(3 Posts)
peedieworky Mon 30-May-11 11:19:36

Hi all,

My little boy is 1 and a half weeks old and is breast feeding well. He was born by emergency c-section so my milk was initially very delayed and as such he has had 2 "top-up" feeds (a few days apart)with formula and has managed to go from breast to bottle & back to breast again with no issues (hope I'm not tempting fate there!). Looking ahead I'm keen to start thinking about expressing to avoid having to resort to formula but I have no idea when or how to start. He tends to feed of both sides every feed (one more than the other) and feeds every 2-3 hours. Should wait till his feeds are more spaced out? Or how long does it take me to "re-fill" once he finishes? Sorry - I feel I need the Puffin book of breastfeeding here blush!

All advice much appreciated. Thanks in advance x

Albrecht Mon 30-May-11 11:38:46

You don't need to refill, you always have milk, it just comes a bit slower when they have been feeding for longer. Its like a river rather than a lake.

I find hand expressing least painful and most productive. But lots of women don't get much to begin with so don't despair if its dribbles. Great site for any breastfeeding query here

Its up to you if you want to build up a stash but this early on I would suggest just concentrating on putting him to the breast as often as he seems to need or want it. Giving bottles can lead to nipple confusion but it can also affect your supply as babies are much more efficient feeders than any pumping.

kimberlina Mon 30-May-11 12:48:02

I waited until 6 wks before expressing - it's quite a faff in my experience so going straight to the boob is probably easier. I also found hand expressing easier. First time I managed about 10 ml tops but after doing it regularly and getting into the swing I could get over 100ml a time. I did but a TT manual cheap in Boots and found that ok.

Timing wise - like Albrecht says you can't run out of milk. But if you do the lesser used side straight after a morning feed you are likely to be fuller and then maybe more successful. Or mid way between feeds so after an hour or so.

Good luck

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