Advanced search

Want to start expressing - DD is 2.4 years! Some practical questions.

(20 Posts)
CantSleepWontSleep Wed 04-Jun-08 15:21:22

I haven't expressed since dd was about 3 or 4 months (she wouldn't take a bottle so was all a bit pointless).

I am now 5 months pregnant with ds, but have gestational diabetes. This means that there's a fair chance that the baby might 'need' formula when it is a few hours old, to help stabilise its blood sugars. I have absolutely no intention of letting him have any, so want to have a supply of breast milk ready that he can have if necessary.

Dd still feeds several times a day at age 2.4 yrs, so I am lucky in that I should be able to express and freeze some milk ready for Sept/Oct.

My questions are...

1. Has anyone done this before?
2. Is it likely to be easier than I am imagining (which is not very easy) to get some milk with my pump (medela mini electric) - I was never a great expresser even in the early days?
3. I guess I need to freeze it in pretty small portions, but how small?
4. All that hoo-har about stuff that's in the plastic in bottles - do I need to read anything/worry about it? I have some Avent Via bm storage containers that are unused from when I had dd, and was hoping to use these to store the milk in. Alternatively, I may have some medela bags left if they would be better.

hoxtonchick Wed 04-Jun-08 15:27:04

i have pre-existing diabetes, & both my children were cup fed (formula) after delivery. they lapped it up like cats, very clever & no nipple confusion. i went on to exclusively breastfeed both of them. i shouldn't think you'll need very much, but expressing is a good plan. i should think the avent containers will be fine, just don't put too much in each one so you can defrost a little when you need it. mine only had a couple of feeds each, & i put them to the breast first each time. you might also try & get hold of some syringes (where???) & freeze milk in those so you can drop it into your baby's mouth.

projectpoppy Wed 04-Jun-08 15:29:32

I used to express quite a lot using Medela Mini electric, and found it quite easy.
I did it for first 2 weeks for dd as she was too jaundiced to feed properly. In early days each feed was about 30-40ml. I think milk lasts for 24 hours, so depending on how much you express each time you could freeze the whole lot together and it would do for several feeds for new baby. I used to freeze it in bags just because it takes up less room in freezer that way.
Think it lasts 3 months in freezer, so maybe start in a few weeks time.

projectpoppy Wed 04-Jun-08 15:30:52

P.S. I also fed the expressed milk from a cup at first and then went on to breastfeed successfully for over year.

luvaduck Wed 04-Jun-08 15:33:17

will you still be feeding dd then???
if so could you express at the time instead of freezing and storing - then it would boost your supply as well????

CantSleepWontSleep Wed 04-Jun-08 15:36:13

I don't know if I'll still be feeding dd then or not - will be her decision!

Hospital midwife advised it would keep for 6 months in freezer, and as milk supply often dries up significantly in later pregnancy, I want to start very soon to be sure of getting some.

I hadn't thought of freezing directly into syringes - will ask at next clinic appt.

Thanks for all responses so far .

LiegeAndLief Wed 04-Jun-08 16:06:53

You might want to double check the length of time you can keep milk in the freezer, I was told three months when ds was in SCBU, but don't know which is right!

I expressed a lot when ds was first born, but found it a lot harder when I tried recently - ds is nearly 2 - he had gunky eyes and I wanted some bm to put on them. I could only do it by him latching on until let down, then taking him off again to express a bit. As you can imagine he was not best pleased! Hope you find it easier!

CantSleepWontSleep Wed 04-Jun-08 16:58:27

So do I L&L! Will check with hunker re storage - she will know better than anyone else!

Knew I had another question that I forgot to ask in my OP.

Do I need to sterilise everything before I use it, or can I just do a quick wash in hot water or dishwasher (can't remember if pump is dishwasher proof or not)?

projectpoppy Wed 04-Jun-08 17:16:55

Pump is dishwasher proof I think, but I would sterilise everything for a new born

DisplacementActivity Wed 04-Jun-08 17:20:37

Message withdrawn

CantSleepWontSleep Wed 04-Jun-08 17:29:23

Excellent - kellymom says 3-6 months, which will do for me, as it only needs to last 4 months .

If only I could have chocolate DA, but the diabetes unfortunately prohibits just about every luxury you could wish for!

DisplacementActivity Wed 04-Jun-08 17:33:59

Message withdrawn

EachPeachPearMum Wed 04-Jun-08 18:00:48

csws- I have some unused bm bags, and some syringes (which can be sterilised) if you need them.
I used the via cups for dd's ebm, but a newb will need such tiny amounts, you will fill your whole freezer with air!
let me know.
I'm sure I kept ebm for up to 6 months, but only used it in food (mashed potato etc) rather than her drink it.

CSWS, i think by now your milk has changed to colostrum. i can't express at all but in between feeds (dd down to a night and morning feed), i have noticed traces of colostrum on my top now.

hereon Thu 15-May-08 20:32:59 I reposted something from Mears a long time ago. It should give you a good insight about the whats and hows.

I think i would not be too concerned about expressing colostum at the moment. you theoretically still have a lot of time to do so.

The original post by Mears was for hunker who also had GD and she never bothered to express colostrum till after her baby was born. She had a great thread about her experience in hospital where she was being pressured to give formula.

i'll have a search for the old thread.

here it is

CantSleepWontSleep Wed 04-Jun-08 18:31:43

Thanks kiskidee - off to have a read.
Hunker mentioned the post by mears to me I think - she was hoping to reproduce it on her blog, but I haven't seen it yet.

Just want to get the expressing sorted so that it's one less thing to worry about really, and easier to do it during term time when dd has a couple of afternoons at nursery school.

PrettyCandles Wed 04-Jun-08 18:34:59

What a brilliant idea to prepare yourself in this way. An unforeseen benefit of long-term breastfeeding!

You can buy sterilisable syringes at chemists. You have to ask for them over the counter (they're for giving medicines to babies) but they are for 5ml max. You can also buy larger single-use syringes in sterile packs at some pharmacies. Again, you have to ask for them. They're quite cheap. I don't know what happens to them if you freeze them - might be worth having a trial run.

ChairmumMiaow Wed 04-Jun-08 20:09:20

Its a bit of a faff but we find that the easiest and quickest way to get some milk out is to have DS on one side and the pump on the other. DS triggers the good old hormones and the pump finishes the job!

CantSleepWontSleep Wed 23-Jul-08 11:14:39

Right ladies - have syringes from hospital to freeze milk in, pump out of loft and cleaned and attached to my breast, but nothing coming out! Dd assures me that there is still plenty of milk in them, but it obviously they don't want to co-operate for the pump, which is what I feared.

Any advice?

cmotdibbler Wed 23-Jul-08 11:19:20

Hand expressing is much easier at this stage as you push the milk out. Theres some great pictures of how to do it in the magazine linked to on Hunkers blog You can also do it straight into the syringes if careful.

If your DD will co-operate, get her to have a quick suck and then express, or do it in the bath

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: