What is power pumping?
Power pumping is the act of using a breast pump to mimic cluster feeding in an intense schedule, so as to increase breast milk supply in a comparatively short time. It's a practical application of the breastfeeding supply and demand equilibrium concept which basically states that the more you demand milk from your breasts, the more they'll produce.
The ideal schedule for power pumping
Our schedule above differs quite a bit from others you can find online.
Typically other power pumping schedules only allow for 10 minutes resting time between sessions. In our experience however 10 minutes is way too short for the body to produce more milk for the subsequent sessions. What happens if you only rest 10 minutes is that you'll simply have no milk left for the second and third sessions, which makes them rather pointless.
Other schedules also typically set the time of the 2nd and 3rd sessions to half that of the first session (typically 10 min for the 2nd and 3rd sessions versus 20 min for the first). We find this to be quite arbitrary: some women will only have milk for 5 minutes for the 2nd and 3rd sessions while others will have enough for 20 minutes of pumping. Why continue pumping when your milk runs out or stop pumping when you still have milk? It makes more sense to simply pump until your milk dries out.
Finally we've made the 3rd session optional. This comes from personal experience. Power pumping works very well, albeit slightly less, with only two sessions. And in our busy world not all mums can carve out 2 hours in their day to do power pumping!
Are there women for whom power pumping is not recommended?
The effect of power pumping is to increase one's milk supply. Before doing so you should ensure you don't have blocked milk ducts or that you aren't prone to engorged breasts.
If you increase your milk supply when you suffer from clogged milk ducts or engorged breasts, you'll just make these issues worse and might contract mastitis.
Fear not though, a great way to avoid clogged ducts and engorged breasts is to drink Unblock Nursing Tea, a herbal tea designed just for this purpose.
Start drinking Unblock Nursing Tea a couple of days before you start power pumping and also while you do power pumping. This way the milk should flow unobstructed in your milk ducts!
How long does it take for power pumping to work?
Most nursing mothers should see a clear improvement in their milk production within two to three days.
If you still see no difference after 1 week, power pumping may not work for you. You may explore the possibility that it is because your milk ducts might clogged, restricting any increase in milk flow. If that's the case, consider drinking Unblock Nursing Tea, a herbal tea designed to unblock breast milk ducts.
You may also want to explore alternative ways to increase your milk supply. Here are a few practical tips:
- Relax. Easier said than done but emotional stress does have a big impact on milk supply.
- Drink a milk boosting tea like Milk Boost Tea. It's packed with herbs used for centuries to increase milk supply and it works wonders!
- Eat nutritious food. Your milk, after all, is made from the food you eat. If you don't eat well, you can't blame your body for not producing adequate milk. Especially nutritious foods include fish soup, meat in general but red meat in particular, plenty of grains, etc.
At what time of the day should I power pump?
Ideally you should power pump when your baby is sleeping. Between 9pm and midnight is a particularly appropriate time because it is said that your prolactin level (the hormone that helps you produce milk) is highest during that time.
If you decide to do power pumping twice a day, place the second time during your little one's longest nap during the day.
Should I continue to power pump after I reach my milk production goal?
When you reach your goal (say a 30% increase of your milk production levels) you can continue power pumping for one or two days to use your body to the new production level. After this, you can stop the process.
When you stop power pumping, you might see a small drop in milk production. The most important thing is that your total milk production level is higher than before.
It's important to remember that according to the breastfeeding supply and demand equilibrium concept if you produce more milk you need to express it. In short the demand needs to match your increased supply. Otherwise your breasts will become engorged and you might develop painful clogged ducts. If that happens to you feel free to drink Unblock Nursing Tea, a herbal tea designed to unblock breast milk ducts.
What can I do when I power pump?
When you power pump, feel free to do anything that makes you feel comfortable. You can take the time to do a facial mask, read a book, listen to music, watch your favorite TV series, work, etc.
Power pumping is very time and energy consuming, we known mums easily give up if they don't see results fast. As such it's important you don't make that time a torture for you, instead try putting it to good use or use it to relax.
What if my baby wakes up in the middle of a power pumping session?
If there is no-one around to help you with the baby, the best thing to do is to set the pump aside and let your baby finish the job. In case there is not much milk left in your breasts, feed the baby with what you have already pumped.
If the baby wakes up in your rest time between two sessions, feed the baby with what you have already pumped, change their diaper and try to get them back to sleep. Then continue with your next session.
Article tags: Breastfeeding and maternity