We are often asked by exclusively pumping moms, “What are some great ways for increasing milk supply when pumping?” There are 5 really important things a mom needs to do when she wants to increase milk supply when pumping. They are:
- Take Lactiful Supply Max – This all-natural, made in America, herbal supplement was linked in a 2012 study to increase milk supply in 75% of the study’s subjects! Not only that, one of the ingredients also increases let downs. This is extremely important when pumping because achieving let downs with a pump is one of the biggest challenges when pumping.
- Make sure you have a good fitting, high quality pump – Not all pumps are created equal and they range in quality and effectiveness just like herbal treatments for low milk supply. At the bottom end you’ll find under-powered single electric pumps and at the high end you’ll find medical-grade dual electric pumps. Often a manual pump is more effective than a low-cost electric pump – but it can be a heck of hand work out. If you’re serious about increasing milk supply when pumping, you need to rent a medical-grade pump or purchase the highest quality pump you can afford.You also need to be fitted for the pump by a professional. Usually a certified lactation consultant can help you with this and can provide the best training for how to use your pump effectively.
- Avoid or fix as many causes of low milk supply that you can – Sometimes your milk supply can dip if you become ill or begin an aggressive diet or workout routine. Simple things like dehydration or complex things like thyroid problems can lower milk supply and likewise fixing them results in increasing milk supply to your prior levels.
- Create a letdown kit – Pumping can often feel very removed from your baby and for a couple million years we’ve been programed to letdown milk to a breastfeeding baby. When the breastfeeding baby is in a different room or miles away at a sitters, our bodies can need a little encouragement to release the milk that’s built up. So for that reason, create a letdown kit!A letdown kit is a collection of things that help you feel bonded to your baby. Common things in a letdown kit is a slideshow of your favorite pictures of baby, that is on your computer or phone; a recording of your baby’s sounds; and an unwashed blanket or clothing items that smells like baby.
To increase milk supply when pumping, get out your kit as soon as you begin to pump and go through each of the items in the kit. The goal is to use the items in your get to a deeply emotional reaction and connection to baby. When you feel this strong emotion, you’ll trigger letdowns which has the effect of increasing milk supply when pumping.
A word of warning however, some moms say the letdown kit reminds them not just of their baby but of their separation from baby. This brings on feelings of sadness, longing, loneliness and despair. Negative emotions will hamper letdowns and have the opposite effect of increasing milk supply. If you are one of these moms, don’t make a letdown kit. Instead while you pump, try to distract yourself by playing a game on your iPad, calling a friend to talk, or reading a really good book.
- Pump more frequently – Increase the number of times you pump each do so that you are pumping at least every three hours, as measured from the start of one session to the start of the next, during the day and every four hours at night. Your body will notice this increase in demand and will try to respond by creating more milk. (Your chances when doing this go up when you eat a sufficient number of healthy calories, drink 64 ounces of water each day and take Lactiful Supply Max.)