If only someone would have told me these things before I tried pumping!
Here are my top tips so that you don’t have to fumble your way through figuring out how to pump like I did.
Measure your nipple and make sure you are using the correct flange size.
PSA not all nipples are the same size and the flange that came with your pump may not be the right fit! Learn how to measure your nipple and choose the correct flange size. Here is a printable tool for measuring.
If you are having pain or discomfort no matter what flange size you use, you may have what’s called elastic nipples. I did! Silicone flanges like Pumpin Pals saved my pumping journey. Or I’ve heard Lactek babymotion flanges are good too.
Get a hands free pumping bra.
Even if you plan on only pumping every once in a while, and especially if you plan on pumping more frequently – get yourself a hands free pumping bra. The Medela one is great, or if you want an even nicer one, I love Kindred Bravely’s because you can wear them even when you are not pumping.
Learn how to use your hands to massage while pumping.
I thought you just put the pump on, sit back and let it do it’s thing, but you will have such a better pumping session if you learn how to utilize heat and massage while pumping. Youtube “Hands on Pumping”.
I cannot stress this enough – drink LOTS of water when pumping.
Some electrolytes like coconut water, or regular water with a squeeze of lemon and a tiny pinch of himalayn sea salt work wonders too. Bonus – if you regularly chug a big glass of water right when you start pumping, your body can potentially use this as a sign to trigger your brain to release a milk let down.
Follow Instagram accounts and facebook groups about pumping/breastfeeding.
I learned so much more from instagram accounts and facebook groups than I did from any breastfeeding book. Follow @bemybreastfriend and @pump_momma_pump and join the facebook group Legendairy Mamas.