Weaning from the breast pump

Thursday, July 19, 2012

As you may or may not know, Lulu & I had trouble breastfeeding & so I pumped for the first three months & the pump feeds were supplemented with formula.

I pumped every three hours round the clock and found that skipping pumps made me extra emotional, not to mention giving me mild mastitis, so the best thing was to stick to the schedule & pump for at least 20 minutes every three hours. I had worried about how on earth I'd ever stop pumping. Then, when Lulu was 9 weeks old, we went to Adelaide. I missed the lunch time pump & continued to miss the lunchtime pump each day I was there. Yes, I had to have a nap on the Friday afternoon to avoid being extra emotional, but I'd managed to miss the lunchtime pump for all three days I was in Adelaide.

When I returned home I continued a schedule of one middle of the night pump, one morning, one early afternoon, one late afternoon & one late evening pump. Wow at sounds like a lot but it was less than the every three hours schedule. Then I slowly cut back the length of time I pumped for, from twenty minutes, down to 17 minutes for one week, then down to 15 minutes.  After this I pumped only when I felt full, rather than having a schedule. The pump sessions slowly decreased as I stopped producing milk. I ceased pumping just after Lulu was three months old.

The main thing to remember when weaning is not to go cold turkey. Don't just stop, whether you are pumping or breastfeeding, it is best to slowly decrease the pumping/feeding sessions. This reduces the chance of mastitis & the likelihood of depression. 

Do you have any tips on weaning from the breast pump? Any questions?

You can read my breast pumping tips here.
Read about Joanna Goddard's (from A Cup of Jo) experience of weaning related depression here.

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2 comments :

  1. You are amazing for pumping that frequently! I don't know if I could have done it if I had been in your shoes. And such good advice about weaning! I had a lot of trouble weaning my second baby (got a mastitis several times-- ouch!) AND experienced some depression with each weaning. It is so important to go slow.

    P.s.- I'm new to your blog and can't wait to read more about you!

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  2. the weaning blues. yikes. they are so so real. going through them myself as ramona's nursing becomes less and less frequent.

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