Expressing of breast milk
Sometimes it can be necessary to use a breastpump, for instance when the newborn baby only sucks very weakly from the breast so that milk production is not adequately stimulated. Regular pumping can also build up and maintain milk production if mum and baby are separated, e.g. when you return to work or the baby is premature or ill. You can carry on feeding your baby with valuable breast milk and will be better able to continue breastfeeding at a later date.
When you use a pump the milk does not always flow straight away. Feelings such as fear and pain can block the let-down reflex. You can encourage the flow of milk in the following ways.
- Choose a comfortable position for pumping.
- Relax and think about your baby; look at a photo of her.
- Pump where you can see or are close to your baby.
- Listen to harmonious music.
- Carry out a short breast massage (Plata Rueda) before each pumping session.
- Place a warm compress e.g. Temperature Pack on the breast before pumping.
- Warm the funnel of the breast shell before putting it in place.