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is it normal to only ever be able to express 1oz from both boobs??

(9 Posts)
Tangas Sat 20-Jun-09 23:38:28

I had this problem with my DS, I have the medela mini electric breast pump, bought it second hand. But i can only ever get 1 oz out of both boobs!
My friend could express a whole bottle full!
I'm exhausted and tired, my nipples are sore and pink. I want DP to start doing some feeds and he really wants to so he can experiance the bonding that comes with feeding.
Is this normal or is it the pump thats nackered??

serenity Sat 20-Jun-09 23:43:22

Some people have problems expressing. I couldn't do it, I just never got the hang of it. Don't know if it was just me or whether there's a technique to it I didn't work out. Hopefully one of the more knowledgeable posters on here will be able to come up with some tips for you to try!

PortAndLemon Sat 20-Jun-09 23:53:18

I could only ever do that much. I tried a couple of different pumps, too. Could you get someone to teach you manual expressing? I hear that that can be pretty effective once you get the knack.

monkeysmama Mon 22-Jun-09 09:49:48

Tangas I've been bfing a very hungry baby for 13 months sometimes 10 times a day sometimes 4 depending on her mood but have always found expressing a bit hit and miss even though I have done it more or less every day for a year shock

Anyway, I have found several things that help:
- drinking LOTS of water about 2 hours before I start expressing
- expressing over a few hours (I've expressed over a whole day before just leaving the bottle in the fridge and giving the pump a quick rinse)
- being relaxed - the moment I feel stressed about it no milk comes out
- listening to music or watching tv - there is nothing worse than being attached to a breast pump with sore boobs and hearing that drip drip or lack of one
- to have dd near me or a photo around or something making me think loving thoughts grin
- on days when I have been out or she's not been feeding much I usually express as much as possible and put it in freezer bags
- Have you tried tiger's milk (I think it is called) I know women who swear by it.

It might be worth trying a different pump too. I know some places hire them out (not sure where though) I have the Avent eletric one which is ok.

Not sure any of this is even vaguely helpful but good luck.

elkiedee Mon 22-Jun-09 10:11:40

How old is your DS? I've never done well with expressing though my problems might have been stress related as well.

See if you have a breastfeeding support group near you where someone will be able to see if you can find a position with the baby that will be more comfortable.

Second time round it was feeding lying down which was the breakthrough for me, sitting up I was in quite a lot of pain at first, I then learned to feed in other positions. I feed lying down at night and although it doesn't cure the tiredness it does feel more restful and soothing, and helps me go back to sleep when he's had enough to eat to settle without crying.

Feeding's not the only way for your dp to bond with the baby or to help you - sure it can help but he can change nappies, sing and talk to and play with baby and give baby lots of cuddles when he's around and baby's awake and between feeds.

Tambajam Mon 22-Jun-09 10:23:34

It sounds like you are not getting a 'letdown' which isn't that unusual. You could try hand expressing to get the flow started and then starting with the pump at that point. The other thing is not to stay on one side for ages - better to switch back and forth after only a few minutes.
It might also be the pump though.

Is the pump making your sore or are you sore anyway? You may want to give one of the helplines a ring as if you are sore and have very pink nipples that could indicate thrush for example.

PiggyPenguin Mon 22-Jun-09 17:01:39

I have the same pump and find I can't express masses with it either. If I have really full breasts and am lucky enough to get letdown I can get 2oz or so from each while letdown is going on, but once it has stopped I get practically nothing. I think it is because there is no stimulus except for the pull on the nipple.

Unfortunately (or luckily depending on your viewpoint) this has not really been a problem for me. Ds won't feed from a bottle anyway so I only express if engorged and he won't feed, or if I have a blockage. Sorry not to be more help, but I think it is partly the pump.

lynniep Mon 22-Jun-09 17:07:45

I never expressed very much, although DS fed fine. Took me about a week to express enough for one feed. I never felt anything when my milk came through either. HV would ask about letdown and wotnot and I never knew what she was on about. Baby on - milk comes out - I know cos it dribbles down his chin...

(DS was bf for a year, although he also got one or two bottles of formula a day)

I did find though, that I got a bit more when I expressed manually - you know- I milked myself like a cow. Into a bowl then into the bottle using a funnel. Not when DH was around cos that would really have grossed him out! I found that neither a manual (used avent) or electric pump (medela and also industrial one at the hospital) really worked for me

Rhian82 Tue 23-Jun-09 16:44:49

The brand of pump can definitely make a difference. I had a Tommee Tippee one that was great when DS was newborn, I could get loads with it. But when I went back to work I really struggled to get enough, and figured it was because hormones were different now I hadn't just given birth. But it broke last week and I bought an Avent (both manual pumps) and I can get so much more now.

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