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How to Balance Breastfeeding and Pumping Like a Pro

Milk Goddess - Breast Pumping Bra with Milk 

Estimated read time: 12 minutes

Looking for how to combine breastfeeding and pumping? You have come to the right place.

Breastfeeding is truly an amazing thing.

But there are times when it helps to have a stash of pumped breastmilk, whether it’s because you’re returning to work, going away for a night, or just need a little break. 

Then there are the incredible mamas who pump exclusively. Whatever the reason for your needing to pump, one thing’s for sure, knowing how to combine breastfeeding with pumping breast milk is a skill that requires time, patience, and cutting yourself a lot of slack. 

So, if you’re looking at how to combine breastfeeding and pumping, then read on mama. And remember, You’re the Tits!

Why is breastfeeding and pumping beneficial?

There are a whole bunch of awesome reasons why combing breastfeeding and pumping is so beneficial. Some of these include:

Breastfeeding struggles or challenges: Maybe your little one is struggling to latch, or perhaps you’re concerned they’re not getting enough milk, or they’re not fully emptying your breast. Having some milk on standby is a great way to top them up.

Mastitis: If you’re suffering from blocked ducts or mastitis, pumping is a good way to ensure your breasts are fully drained to help prevent infections and clear out blockages.

Increasing your supply: The more milk is drained from your Tits, the more they will make. If you want to increase your supply then pumping after a nursing session could help.

Bottle feeding: If you need to be away from your baby or you want friends and family to have a turn feeding, then pumping milk for bottle feeding is a lovely way to ensure your babe gets their milk and others get to be involved (and you get some much-needed downtime!)

OK, so these are some great benefits of pumping, but how do you actually balance breastfeeding and pumping?

Mother Pumper Gift Set for working mom returning to work 

Tips for how to combine breastfeeding and pumping

Your milk makers are just magical things.They work on a demand-and-supply basis, so the more you breastfeed or pump, the more milk your beautiful Boobies will produce. 

When you do decide to start adding pumping into your routine, make it a gradual process.

  1. Start with just one pump a day and give it a week for your body to get used to it.

  2. Then, try adding another pumping session, maybe after your baby has gone to bed or during one of their naps. 

  3. Add the sessions gradually and give each one a few days for your body to adjust before adding the next one. 

  4. Another tip is to pump any time your baby misses or skips a feed, so your milk supply doesn’t decrease, and you get an extra bag of your magic milk to stash in the freezer for another time. 

Queen of Pumping - Back to work gift for mom

If your little one decides to just feed from one Boob, pump from the other side. You can do this after your baby has finished or while she’s feeding. And if your milk monster nurses from both breasts, but doesn’t empty them completely, whip your pump out to draw out the remaining milk. 

Ensure you pump until your breasts feel well-drained and the flow has slowed or stopped. 

So, how long after pumping can you breastfeed? Give your body a little time to build itself back up after every pumping session. If you can wait at least an hour after pumping before you breastfeed again. 

The most important thing to remember is that there is no one-size-fits-all method for combining breastfeeding and pumping. Every baby is different, every mom is different, and every milk supply is different (and ever-changing). 

New Mom Stickers for Breast Pumps and water bottles

When to pump while breastfeeding a newborn

First things first.

Experts agree that you should always (where possible) put your baby’s breastfeeding needs first. This means nursing your little angel first and then pumping after a breastfeeding session.

Postpartum hormones are responsible for when your milk first comes in and once these hormones regulate, your milk supply will too. This is when demand and supply come into its own. 

Now, building a pump stash depends on your breastmilk regulating to safely over-produce what your baby consumes in a day. That’s why it’s important to establish your milk supply as soon as possible. Doctors and lactation experts recommend waiting two to three weeks before you start pumping, to give your baby time to establish breastfeeding and regulate your supply.

Of course, every baby and every mama is different, and you might feel like you need a little longer than that. 

Pink Body Positive Boobie Beach Towel

Pumping and breastfeeding schedule

Breastfeeding, pumping, or the combination of the two are super individual processes and will most likely change from month to month…and sometimes even from week to week. There is no “right way,” there is only your way. 

Having a pumping while breastfeeding schedule can help get you into a routine. At first, it might feel a little overwhelming and stressful. Mama, we get it! Breastfeeding and caring for your baby is hard enough, and throwing pumping into the mix might seem impossible.

But you are strong and if you’re keen to build a freezer stash of milk, then we know you’ve got this. 

Let’s take a look at a newborn pumping and breastfeeding schedule. This schedule will allow you to breastfeed while pumping to build a strong supply.

(Remember: this is just a sample schedule so use it as a guideline. Once you get pumpin’ you’ll fall into your own comfortable routine.)

  • 5 am - breastfeed off one or both breasts followed by a ten-minute pumping session.

  • 7 am - breastfeed your cute little nugget.

  • 10 am - breastfeed followed by another ten-minute pump sesh.

  • 12 pm - time for another breastfeeding session, but this time don’t pump.

  • 2 pm - what? Your baby’s hungry again? Snuggle down for another breastfeed.

  • 5 pm - yep, newborns have teeny, tiny tummies that need filling a lot. Get cozy with another breastfeed session.

  • 8 pm - squeeze in one more solo breastfeed before dinner.

  • 10 pm - we know you’re tired mama, and this one can be the hardest. Breastfeed your beautiful baby and follow up with a 10-minute pumping session.

  • 1 am - time to wake up and Whip a Titty Out! Your milk makers are needed for another Boobie session. 

Boob Mug

Now, of course, newborns are funny little things and they might demand your Boobs a lot more than this. Especially when cluster feeding kicks in (which - as exhausting as it might be - is actually amazing for increasing your milk supply.)

If you’re looking for a schedule for breastfeeding and pumping for when you return to work, check out our guide here

If you’re looking to build a kick-ass freezer stash, then it’s generally recommended to pump (from both breasts) for 10-15 minutes after your baby has had their full. Keep this up at least 2-3 times a day and try to maintain this pattern for the first few months. 

Where you can, try and wait a few minutes after your baby has finished, to see if you can achieve another let-down with pumping. Gotta love that tingly feeling. 

Boob Mug gift for breastfeeding mom

Knowing how to balance breastfeeding and pumping isn’t easy

And we think you’re doing an amazing job mama.

Whether you choose to follow a pumping while breastfeeding schedule or decide to just follow your gut, knowing how to combine breastfeeding with pumping can be a great thing for both you and your baby. 

Just do what’s best for you Breastie, and remember, we’re always here for you.   

At Titty City Design, we believe that every boobie is beautiful, and that should be celebrated. We are a female-owned and operated, small business here to spread self-love and body positivity with our line of boob apparel, boob accessories, and boob-themed decor and products for the home. A portion of our proceeds goes to help support postpartum people and breast cancer patients.

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Breastfeeding Milk Goddess

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