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How to express? A list of questions

(19 Posts)
Wills Tue 25-Nov-03 13:10:10

I'm just starting to express milk and really not sure how to go about it. I'm using a hired electronic machine at the moment.

1) Once the milk is captured should I transfer to the fridge straight away or leave to cool first?
2) Next load of expressed milk - should I leave to cool first and then add to prveiously expressed milk, keep seperate altogether, add straight away to milk in fridge (this once concerns me as surely it will heat up milk already there)?
3) How to express - once a day, if so when's best? or little and often if so doesn't that give the wrong mix of foremilk and hindmilk?
4) How long does the milk last for in the fridge?
5) How much does a 14 week old baby need? I haven't a clue but don't want to go out leaving my husband with not enough, however equally don't want to spend days trying to capture enough.

pupuce Tue 25-Nov-03 13:23:55

1. straight to fridge is fine (back of fridge not door) - it's not that hot
2. add straight away is fine
3.Morning is easiest - once or twice a day... BUT why are you expressing would help to say how often and how much. If you express too much you might make too much
4. varies om fridge and who you ask! NCT I believe says 24hours, LLL says 8 days and the Australian BF Assoc. said 3 to 5. From my experience (for what that's worth) 2 or 3 days is fine (some say 6 days too)
5. How long is a pice of string.... if it is to leave DH with bottle and babe I'd say have 7 oz ready which I would have in bags of 3 and 4 oz so that you don't waste it!

Maybe Tiktok has a different view.

Epigirl Tue 25-Nov-03 13:52:28

IME
1)straight to fridge (as pupuce do not put in the door as it is not as cool)
2) I have added it straight away and it has been fine
3) I prefer morning as I am 'fuller'
4) Have read loads of different things, personally I tend to use it pretty soon or freeze it so I'm not sure
5) Gave my 12 week old a bottle of ebm last weekend for the first time and he had 95ml if that's any use. Have learnt from experience with dd that it's best to leave lots of small amounts rather than one big one to minimise waste. Also found it best to leave some in freezer for my own piece of mind! I then used any left over frozen milk for dd's cereal when she was older, not sure if this is 'normal' or not but it was there so I used it!

tinyfeet Tue 25-Nov-03 13:56:01

Hi I agree with everything Pupuce and Epigirl said. The only thing I would add is that the ebm lasts much longer, as you would imagine, if you put it straight into the freezer. I think you can go a couple of weeks in the freezer. In the fridge, is a whole different story - just a few days at most.

motherinferior Tue 25-Nov-03 13:59:41

Ooooh, an expressing thread. I seem to do little else except express at the moment!

Don't worry about the time of day - it depends what works best for you. I used to do a morning one at about 8.30 before I went back to work. If you leak when you feed, you might want to save that milk in a breast shell and add that to the bottle; don't worry about the foremilk/hindmilk mixture - that's Mears's advice so it must be true

Just make sure the baby will take a bottle...

....and good luck!

pupuce Tue 25-Nov-03 18:00:22

Freezing for 3 months no problem in a -18 or colder freezer

Dixie Tue 25-Nov-03 22:53:01

Ifroze my breast milk & was told 3-6 months...however something to bear in mind on what i was told...unsure how true....the milk you produce changes over time to the changing needs of the baby (ie after 4 months i think it was said that iron decreases but no need for supplement to baby if on good diet food wise)
so basically i'm saying if you do freeze milk try to use it up in an orderly fashion as if you freeze it at 2 months by 4 months their requiremets will be different & the milk you are giving them at a normal feed from the breast will be of different quality to the stuff you froze at 2 months. Hope that makes sense & haven't confused anyone.

If sounds more complicated than it is...once you are in a good expressing routine you will find that the milk gets used by your hubby on a regular basis so this problem becomes less of a worry.

survivour Wed 26-Nov-03 00:19:03

Hi wills, I expressed for 10 and a half months, my baby had a face stroke, so couldn't suck, had a NGT in his nose for the first 7 weeks in hospital. He left hospital once this was taken out. I had the 4 ounce little bottles from the hospital and I bought some little stickers, I would fill 8 bottles aday, I expressed every 4 hours on the dot. fridge-24 hours. freezer-3months. I would not have done this normally, but my son was born with a heart defect, and his intestines were outside his body at birth. So I was paranoid about everything. I even kept a list of expressing times on the fridge door, the bottles were dated timed and colour coded. And I had 8+6 year old boys to look after as well.

FairyMum Wed 26-Nov-03 07:48:41

You don't have to put the milk straight in the fridge. It lasts for much longer than normal milk outside the fridge. Once in the fridge it lasts for 48 hours. If defrosted from the freezer about 24 hours. The more you express, the more you will produce......

throckenholt Wed 26-Nov-03 08:07:54

I expressed for my twins for 9 months (little blighters refused to latch on !).

If I planned to use the milk within 12 hours I would not put it in the fridge - I found it was better to leave it at room temperature rather then mess about reheating it.

I tended to keep separate from different expressing sessions.

Express as often as you need to get what you need - you may get enough in 1 session.

Lasts in the fridge a couple of days - depends on you - different for different people.

If you are going to freeze it, do it as soon as possible.

motherinferior Wed 26-Nov-03 07:52:48

Mears and Gt Ormond St both OK freezing in deep freeze for 6 months...I have to admit I just reach for a full bag and don't bother too much about matching it to her current needs.

aloha Wed 26-Nov-03 09:49:33

wow Survivour, that's amazing. What dedication you showed to your son. It's a real achievment and I think it's fantastic. How is your ds now?

mears Wed 26-Nov-03 11:35:15

1. Can go in fridge straight away. Own milk for own baby is OK in fridge for up to 5 days (4).

2. Can add different expressings to each other when all cold, then freeze. Milk can be frozen for 6 months.

3. Express as ofetn as you feel able. I always expressed before feeds rather than after because I got a better yield, sort of midway between when I expected to feed again. Sometimes baby woke to be fed just after I expressed. I just breastfed anyway because there is always milk there. The pump never gets it all out.

5. Your 14 week old will vary in how much they want. Make 4oz and 2 oz bags of milk so that you can always defrost more if needed. Can also be frozec as 1 oz ice cubes.

When actually expressing with the pump (or by hand) keep switching from breast to breast as the flow slows down. You let down from the other side when you are expressing so the milk comes out in spurts. More efficient to keep switching sides that sit using the pump for say 10 minutes a side.

Mixing the gaed of milk will not matter when it is just milk that you are leaving for missed feeds. Different if your baby was receiving all expressed milk at all feeds. Milk is produced to match the needs of the baby at any given time. Better to have milk form an expression a few months ago than formula IMO.

mears Wed 26-Nov-03 11:36:48

1. Can go in fridge straight away. Own milk for own baby is OK in fridge for up to 5 days (4).

2. Can add different expressings to each other when all cold, then freeze. Milk can be frozen for 6 months.

3. Express as ofetn as you feel able. I always expressed before feeds rather than after because I got a better yield, sort of midway between when I expected to feed again. Sometimes baby woke to be fed just after I expressed. I just breastfed anyway because there is always milk there. The pump never gets it all out.

5. Your 14 week old will vary in how much they want. Make 4oz and 2 oz bags of milk so that you can always defrost more if needed. Can also be frozec as 1 oz ice cubes.

When actually expressing with the pump (or by hand) keep switching from breast to breast as the flow slows down. You let down from the other side when you are expressing so the milk comes out in spurts. More efficient to keep switching sides that sit using the pump for say 10 minutes a side.

Mixing the gaed of milk will not matter when it is just milk that you are leaving for missed feeds. Different if your baby was receiving all expressed milk at all feeds. Milk is produced to match the needs of the baby at any given time. Better to have milk form an expression a few months ago than formula IMO.

survivour Wed 26-Nov-03 23:27:38

Hi aloha, My 16month old son is doing very well, for a heart baby anyway. He can drink through a straw, and has been blowing raspberries this week, I didn't think he would ever be able to do these things. If my older boys do this, they will get a clip round the earhole. He even sucks his lips in, but makes a wierd hover noise, he is getting the sensation back in the right side of his face. And another milestone he ate his first apple without choking, anything thicker than puree made him sick, he has started chewing food, and he swallows it. He is finally putting on weight with the help of DUOCAL, we have a dietition who prescribed it, it has taken me this long it get where we are today, we have struggled at times. He is now 10kilos at 16months, my other 2 boys were this weight at 11months. He is now mobile, he still loses balance when he tries to walk, as his toes overlap, but this does not seem to bother him too much. So I will stick by him all the way.

aloha Wed 26-Nov-03 23:43:36

Good news. Bless him, he really sounds as if he's been through the mill - and you too.

motherinferior Thu 27-Nov-03 09:18:41

Survivour...wow.

Mears, do I have to sterilise ice trays before freezing milk (PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE SAY NO, GO ON GO ON...)?

mears Thu 27-Nov-03 18:36:49

If you don't want to sterilise the ice cube trays, it would be best to wash them in the dishwasher which has a sterilising effect really. Breast milk is best frozen in sterile containers to reduce the risk of contamination when defrosting. Will that answer do motherinferior?

LIZS Thu 27-Nov-03 19:02:23

MI, I did with ds but with dd didn't bother, just rinsed them around with fresh kettle water before use (for food too). But then I also didn't freeze much milk in ice cubes second time around, mainly Avent sachets, and would transfer the cubes over to a bag once frozen anyway. Defrosted them in a sterilised bottle.

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