Advanced search

Got questions about giving birth? Know what to expect and when to expect it, with the Mumsnet Pregnancy Calendar.

Expressing colostrum at 36 weeks - hand or pump?

(13 Posts)
Rockspin Sun 14-May-17 10:00:34

I'm being induced in Friday due to GD and other issues, I'll be 37+2 when I go in.
My diabetes midwife has given me lots of syringes and told me to express my colostrum for baby as she is likely to have blood sugar issues.
My 1st DD was also an induction (38 weeks) because of GD and I didn't express beforehand with her as wasn't told to, and luckily she breastfed right away and had no issues with her blood sugars after birth. So I've no experience of expressing beforehand!
So my question is, is it better to express by hand or can I use my pump? I can get a little out by hand after a bath but other than that hand expressing isn't all that successful. Midwife said I can try 3 times a day so a few drops from each breast after a bath is great but I'd like to get some during the day too! Any advice?

seven201 Sun 14-May-17 10:10:54

I couldn't get anything with my hand. In the end I bought a manual pump and would do three squeezes then remove it to collect one tiny drop! I wrecked my nipples (I had to use Shiela for the first month) as I kept trying as I'd only been given 3 days to do it. Only got about 1.5ml total in the end, but every little helps.

Rockspin Sun 14-May-17 12:01:08

Thanks! Yes every little does help. They said they could top her up with formula but I'd like to avoid that if poss so I'll keep trying. I've got 5 days to try!

Mummyme87 Sun 14-May-17 15:22:13

I wouldn't recommend using a pump for colostrum, your nipples could get really painful. Lots of massage, have a look on you tube

AppleMagic Sun 14-May-17 15:27:56

Hand. You'll only get a tiny bit at first but it will increase, especially if you've successfully breastfed before.

Rockspin Sun 14-May-17 15:29:57

Brilliant thank you! Will have a look on YouTube now. Yes I breastfed last time for 2.5 years so fingers crossed.

oliversmummy26 Mon 15-May-17 11:54:06

I'm planning on trying to express colostrum from 36 weeks. I am having a section, and my first son was large and had issues with blood sugars at birth so midwives were giving him formula when it took a while to get breastfeeding established, which I really wasn't happy about.

I'm going to try hand expressing, but I do have a pump, so if all else fails, I think I might try that to get it going, and collect in a syringe..

Rockspin Mon 15-May-17 12:49:06

I found a couple of really good tutorials online and managed half a syringe last night so feeling hopeful I'll have a fair amount by Friday.
Good luck to you too!

MrsNuckyThompson Mon 15-May-17 19:58:31

Hand all the way. Online tutorials. Or get a lactation consultant if you have time / money. It's easy when you get going. Don't attempt with a pump.

WellErrr Mon 15-May-17 20:07:46

Absolutely hand. Please don't use a pump for colostrum, you will wreck your nipples and possibly bruise milk ducts.

For a rough guide:
* Relax. Get the oxytocin flowing. Be calm, be comfortable, and think about babies.
* Massage the breast all around.
* Thumb and forefinger at the base of the nipple, either side, then slide back 2-3cm.
* Squeeze/pressure and hopefully a few drops will appear.
* When flow subsides, rotate your fingers to find new ducts and continue.

Do watch some YouTube videos though. Good luck!

FluffyClouds2017 Mon 15-May-17 20:15:32

I used hand and pump when expressing prior to having my twins early but I was careful to not overdo it on the pump. I found the syringe tricky to use so sterilised an egg cup, expressed into that and then used the syringe to collect. I ended up using it all (about 10-15 syringes) because my babies had low blood sugar so it was worth going to the effort.

Rockspin Mon 15-May-17 21:16:54

Thanks for all tips!
I've tried hand expressing again after last night's good result but today has been less of a success, just a few drops and didn't get time to try during the day as I'm at work.
Going to have another attempt before bed as determined to have at least 1 syringe before Friday!

Rockspin Mon 15-May-17 21:57:55

WellErrr your tips worked, tried expressing in bed, very relaxed and warm and quiet and DH and I spoke about when dd was tiny and things we are looking forward to doing with new baby and lo and behold it worked! Got half a syringe! So thanks again. Will keep on going and by Friday hopefully I'll have a few in stock grin

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: