Not only will Mom be away from baby for the first time, but she also needs to learn how to maintain breastmilk supply, determine how much milk should be pumped and stored in a day, and figure out how to best fit her pumping schedule into her work schedule.
These things all come with time and experience, but what else might be helpful to know before you're back in the office catching up on three months of e-mail? As I've mentioned before, our Lansinoh USA Facebook page has been a hot-spot for moms to get in touch with each other and share advice. So I turned to our moms on Facebook to get their thoughts. I asked: What advice would you give a pregnant or new mom who is planning to pump when maternity leave ends?
Here's what they had to say:
- Make sure you remember to drink enough fluids and stay hydrated. Sometimes you are busy at work and tend to forget.
- Buy the best pump that you can afford. Check to see if your health insurance will cover the cost of the pump and ask your doctor to write a prescription for the pump.
- Practice before you go back and you'll be able to build up a few days worth of supply.
- Load some pictures and video on your phone to help you get flowing.
- While you're pumping, use that time to close your eyes and relax. The more relaxed you are, the easier the milk will let down.
- If possible, keep extra pumping parts/supplies in your desk at work. If you're busy getting out the door in the morning, you might forget to throw flanges or bottles in your bag.
- Know your legal rights to pump. Get acquainted with the laws in your state. Many states require employers to provide a private, sanitary place to pump.
- Remember the lanolin -- that plastic can be rough!