OK, so its now or soon to be time to go back to work! I'm sure you are not excited, but it sometimes must be done. There's a few things you need to know to prepare yourself for going back to work. The first thing is know that you can PUMP at work!
There are laws for pumping in the workplace, so be sure to get in touch with your HR representative to prepare them on what your breastfeeding/pumping plans are!
Be sure that there WILL be a space that is comfortable for pumping while at work!
YOU HAVE YOUR RIGHTS AS A PUMPING MOTHER, remember you are in control and they can not deny you this right to pump. Be sure you search for the Laws on breastfeeding, print out the law and always have it at work. https://www.ncsl.org/research/health/breastfeeding-state-laws.aspx
Now that we have that taken care of, lets start to prepare you and baby for seperation! AH! I know the frustration in that, but it MUST happen and know that it is normal to feel the way you feel. Be sure to begin practicing with the bottle 2-3 weeks in advance for a better transition for you and baby. Know that baby will most likely NOT take the bottle from the one who feeds her naturally ( MOTHER)! Don't panic, your baby will not take the bottle most times, but know that when baby is hungry, baby WILL eat! Babies are smarter than you think, and by now they know that if they want you they can have you!
WHAT SHOULD I BRING IN MY PUMPING BAG?
Be sure you have either 4-5 (glass bottles, bottles, pumping bag) whichever you prefer for when you express the milk.
Pump for 20 mins each time EVERY 2 hours. Don't let your job tell you that you cant at this time because you and I both know you can BY LAW!
Don't watch the amount of milk that you are expressing, Place a baby sock over the bottle, look at pictures of baby, and put on some music and relax for those 20 minutes.
Be sure you have a car adapter just in case you need to pump in the car.
You must pump every 2 hours to keep your milk supply regulated, and try NOT to stress, that can decrease your milk supply.
Remember you DO NOT NEED SUPPLEMENTS to increase milk supply. Breastmilk is supply and demand ONLY!
Stay hydrated and try your best to eat a well balanced diet. YOU got this!!
How to clean your pump pieces? Its important to know how to and when to replace your specific pieces to your pump!
How often should you change your pump parts?
Valves and membranes- every 60-90 days
The little white flaps on the valves need to be replaced regularly.
If membrane does lay flat, replace the part as needed .
DUCK VALVES- replace every 4 weeks for EP
BACK FLOW PROTECTOR DIAPHRAMS- every 3 months (in closed systems)– If you see moisture in your pump part, it may cause mold o replace as needed
TUBING- (As needed ) if moisture gets into tubing, REPLACE tubing- there’s no way to sterilize this- if it slips on and off then replace
BREASTS SHIELD- replace breast shields every 6 months
Now on to how to actually use your pump.......
KEEP THE SETTING LOW when pumping- THIS STIMULATES A NURSING BABY AND TELLS YOUR BODY TO LET DOWN MILK FOR THE BABY
Once you see the milk In the container, turn the speed of your pump down and the amount of suction up. PUMP AT HIGHEST SUCTION WITHIN YOUR COMFORT ZONE.
Going back to work should be a smooth transition, be sure you let your co workers, employees, employers know your plan, and know that you can do it!