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Any tips for exclusive EBM feeding?

(3 Posts)
myrubberduck Tue 23-Apr-13 11:49:58

My 2 week old is in hospital for second time due to problems with weight gain and jaundice and I have decided to bottle feed from now on. I am getting reasonable amounts of bm from expressing with elwctric pump so will try to feed DS EBM with formula top ups if necessary. Any tips for upping supply and/or practical tips on how to organise things at home? Any help gratefully received! smile

MsElisaDay Tue 23-Apr-13 13:24:14

I did this for 10 weeks (when DS miraculously decided to latch on and start feeding from me!) and it's not easy, but can most definitely be done.

The most important thing is to get a good double electric pump, which is fast and quiet (so you don't disturb your DP/DC at night). I'd bought the Tommee Tippee electric pump but quickly found this wasn't good enough for such heavy use, so borrowed a hospital-grade one instead.

The way I did it was to pump every time DS fed. This equated to around every three hours, round the clock (including through the night). I'd do it by feeding him a bottle of EBM when he started showing hunger cues, settling him down and then pumping.

The pump I was lent, a Medela one, was so good that, after a couple of weeks, in 10 minutes I could get up to 7 or 8oz. My supply went up pretty quickly, as at first I'd only get 3oz or so each time. By the time I stopped pumping at 10weeks I'd even got 10oz a couple of times. This is more than DS was taking, so I froze it in the Lansinoh milk bags, and it's coming in useful now I've returned to work.

Each night I'd sterilise a batch of bottles and then take a couple of those sterilised bottles upstairs with me, so I didn't have to go down to the kitchen before pumping every time. My pump was in my bedroom, next to the bed, so I could pump in bed.
I'd then take the bottle of milk downstairs and pop it in the fridge.

I always tried to be a couple of bottles ahead, so I wasn't pumping for the next feed, or pumping with an angry and hungry baby shouting at me.
I therefore usually had two or three bottles of milk in the fridge at any time. DS didn't seem bothered about temperature, so rather than warming them I'd just take them out of the fridge to get to room temperature, around 10 mins before each feed.

I washed the bottles in the dishwasher and then sterilised them with the Tommee Tippee steriliser. I didn't sterilise the pump, I have to admit - just rinsed it out after each use and bunged the bits through the dishwasher each time it went on (every other day, usually).

The most difficult part was being out and about during the day. If I knew I'd be away from the pump for several hours I'd take a hand pump out with me and squirrel myself away somewhere, but it wasn't that easy. I also bought a small coolbag so I could take bottles of EBM out with us, though apparently it's okay for a fair few hours at room temperature anyway.

Hope that helps. We only had "stock issues" once or twice, mainly when I'd been out for a long time and had struggled to get the right volume with a hand pump, but in those cases I just use the ready-to-use cartons of Aptamil. It needs a bit of organisation, but after a few days the routine becomes second nature.
Good luck.

myrubberduck Tue 23-Apr-13 16:08:31

Thanks- v helpful!

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