lunabee34baby: (tmi by cru5h)
[personal profile] lunabee34baby
I'm glad I purchased this book; I think it offers a great deal of information on how to create and maintain an adequate milk supply through pumping. I think it could benefit from a better editor; the book is repetitious at points, and I would have organized it differently (it's clear to me when reading this book that Casemore is essentially beefing up the original blog posts she made about this issue), but overall it's a pretty good manual for pumping.

The beginning is totally skippable. I don't need a whole chapter about how breast is best complete with charts and graphs, nor do I need tips for how to get over guilt about not breastfeeding directly from the breast. I do get that that info is useful for some women; after all, many women who decide to exclusively pump do so because they have premie babies or because they have breastfeeding issues that cause then to abandon their original plans for feeding their kids. I was surprised but happy that she mentioned that some women just think it's weird for a baby to suck on their boobs and don't want to do that since I fall into that camp.

Now that I'm a bit more informed about how exclusively pumping works, I realize that more was going on to sabotage my attempts to pump and feed Emma than just my diet. Yes, starving myself was not conducive to producing breast milk, nor was post-partum depression. However, I wasn't pumping frequently enough or for long enough, and I started skipping that middle of the night pumping session after only a few weeks--all pretty much sure-fire ways to get your milk to dry up, which mine did. I also was given medication to increase my milk supply which probably exacerbated my post-partum depression, and one of the things Casemore emphasizes is that stress, anxiety, and depression all contribute to poor milk supply. Once again, I wish that someone had helped me figure this stuff out instead of leaving me to flounder and fail.

I have to say before I get into the nuts and bolts of Casemore's book that I'm a bit more daunted after reading. I'm worried that the time commitment necessary to make exclusively pumping truly work for feeding Fiona long term is going to end up being unmanageable for me. In addition to the daily time requirement (roughly two hours a day) for pumping, at least initially the frequency of pumping is a bit overwhelming. Add in washing equipment each time, and it starts to seem like I'll be doing nothing but pumping and washing the pump kit. I don't remember pumping being a really intrusive or time consuming thing when I was doing it with Emma, but that's because I was doing it wrong LOL and if I want it to work with Fiona, I'll need to be able to make that commitment. Part of me wonders if I ought to just try to feed directly from the breast, pumping afterwards from time to time to build up a little supply so that others can feed her sometimes, to save myself some time and energy. I'll have to be getting up to pump anyway and then have the added washing and etc. to go along with that. Another part of me wonders if I ought to just pump what seems doable to me, and if (or when really) my milk dries up, just switch to formula like I did with Emma. I do believe that any amount of breast milk is better than none, and I think if I eat and hydrate properly and incorporate some of the techniques that Casemore mentions without going overboard with the pumping frequency that I can probably stretch out my milk viability for longer than the five weeks I went with Emma. I don't think I'd be able to make it six months, but I think two, possibly three would be doable that way. When it comes right down to it, formula is so much easier. You're not tied to a baby or a pump and anyone can feed the baby. You can sleep through the night starting so much earlier if you have a partner or a grandparent willing to take night shift, and you can go places without worrying about having to breastfeed the baby or find some place to pump. It's pretty tempting to just not worry about it. IDK

I need to talk to Josh and get his opinion. I really don't want to directly breast feed just because it felt so weird with Emma. She was a premie and so tiny; my boob was bigger than her whole body LOL. She couldn't really latch properly (and again, nobody spent any time helping me with that or trying to show me how; I tried to breastfeed her for like two seconds and then they shoved a pump at me; don't get me wrong; I was relieved and grateful for the pump and I know that getting food into a baby that's less than five pounds is a priority, but still), and it did feel weird and wrong somehow to have a baby sucking on a part of my body that I had always considered sexual. All that being said, everything has been so different with Fiona that I'm willing to believe that breastfeeding her could be an entirely different situation. I'm willing to try it with the understanding that if it really skeeves me out or if it doesn't work, I'm going to move on without guilt. At that point, I'd have the option of exclusively pumping. I'm so indecisive!

Notes from the text:

Pumping How-Tos

keep a pumping log

72 keep track of daily volume; women with large storage capacity who can pump less freqently will see an increase in production after dropping a session

114 use lanolin so no friction

115 let nipples air dry; leave a little milk on nipples after pumping or breastfeeding

31 at first pump more frequently and then less frequently for longer; should be pumping for roughly two hours a day at all times

38 frequency of removal is key

53 pump every two hours around the clock if possible with longer stretch at night

53 goal of at least 8 pumping sessions per day

39 must pump at night; at least one session between 1-5 in the morning

40 don't stop pumping after flow stops; let down is intermittent

58 don't have to pump at exactly same time every day; same number of sessions daily with no longer than 6 hours in between sessions; no longer than 3 hours in between daytime sessions

52 when starting a session, begin with low suction level and high number of cycles; then decrease cycles and increase suction

31 you can start dropping pumping sessions around 3 months

55 drop no more than one pumping session per month; consider always keeping night pump

66 can drop an actual session or lengthen time between sessions

66-67 sample schedules

What to Avoid

39 be careful with birth control; don't get on any for a while if possible; discuss with doc

54 don't let supply get too large; 40-50 oz daily is good

115 no soap

too high a suction level; find minimum suction level that works

Increasing supply

62 eat oatmeal daily; take fenugreek; drink Mother's Milk Tea (not at same time as fenugreek)

63 supplements to take if your period starts (which can decrease supply)

64 cluster and power pumping


54 give pumped colostrum with syringe

97 best to give freshly expressed

97-99 freezer guidelines and storage times

100 use refrigerated milk within two days

100 don't shake separated milk; swirl it

101 don't heat the milk on stove or in microwave; if you warm it by running warm water over it, use immediately


77 stats for pumps

78 companies

79 hospital grade pumps run on a closed system

84 two best personal pumps

85 flanges

88 pump care

90 sterilize before first use

93 bottles can just be washed

95 use plastic storage bags for freezer


Does our dishwasher wash at high enough temperature to sterilize?

What size flange should I use (pg 51)?

Don't wear an underwire bra? Really? (pg 52)

Will insurance cover this?

Sections to Review

49 Guidelines

109 problems

133 switching to formula or cow's milk

134 how to wean


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