Milk Stash - What you need to know!
Updated: May 8
Everyone wants to make oodles of breastmilk and have a well fed baby. I want that for them too :). I receive many inquiries about pumping the milk stash they are pinning on Pinterest.
Let's pause here.
If you have one baby you are making enough milk to feed one baby. Too much pumping is sending the message you have two or three babies. Your baby calibrates your supply by nursing on demand. The more you nurse, the more you make. You do not want to induce an oversupply with too much pumping.
Yes! You want to have a "stash" of milk for the initial transition to go back to work or out of the house. Pumping to stock your deep freezer and your neighbors freezer is not the goal and may create oversupply issues.
After the first few weeks of initiating breastfeeding, baby is back to birthweight and things are going well then...I generally recommend pumping after your first morning breastfeeding session.
Thinking you will pump 6-8 oz is unrealistic. Some women do but on average its normal to pump 1/2 oz - 3 or 4 oz. There are exceptions but don't think something is necessarily wrong if your baby is gaining well and you are pumping an average amount. I love this article by Nancy Mohrbacher on The Magic Number.
What are the issues that arise with an oversupply? You may notice your infant has more spit up or stool changes. You may experience plugged ducts or mastitis. Pumping after all breastfeeding or most of them is a way to INDUCE an oversupply. Remember, the more you stimulate your breasts, the more you make.
Keep it simple and if you want individual recommendations - contact your IBCLC!
I offer Virtual, Office and In-Home Lactation Consultations https://www.melaniemyersibclc.com/services