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Weaning when pumping

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
I was wondering if you could help me with some weaning advice3. I work out of the home, so I pump DD's milk for daycare. I nurse her at 6, pump at 9, 12, 3, nurse at 6:30 (she goes to bed at 7:15), and then pump at 9:30. She takes 3-4 6 oz. bottles of milk at daycare.

DD's ped. said I could cut the time of my 1st pumping in 1/2. Then for that bottle, I could use a sippy cup or bottle & supplement 1/2 expressed breast milk & 1/2 formula. She said I would follow this plan (cut pumping time in 1/2, supplement 1/2 bottle/sippy cup with formula) for 6 weeks of weaning. For example, during week 2, I would have 2 pumping sessions of 7-8 minutes each, and DD would receive 2 bottles/sippy cups that are 1/2 expressed breast milk & 1/2 formula.

Does this sound like good advice? Could you please share your weaning ideas. Thanks.
post #2 of 8
I think a lot depends on the age of your baby and why you're weaning. I waited til my dd was over a year before weaning from the pump because I didn't want to offer formula.

That said, when I weaned from the pump, I shortened each pump session a bit and then starting moving sessions closer together until they merged into one pump session and then slowly moved the time of that pump later and later in the day until I dropped it completely. Other people just drop one session at a time over a period of time until they are weaned.

No matter which way you choose, go slowly and watch for plugged ducts and signs of mastitis so you don't have problems.
post #3 of 8
Sounds like a lot to remember to me! I have enough trouble remembering which breast to offer first! Not sure of the age of your baby, but I didn't wean the pump until it was clear that DS was no longer interested in EBM (about 15 months). I just followed his lead - meaning pumping at the times that he would normally nurse - and other than a few near-embarrassing moments in meetings (: ), it was a painless transition. I'm assuming that the formula is because your little one is less than one year, so I don't have any experience. I have heard that it's best to gradually introduce it. And be prepared for the less-than-pleasant diapers! I agree that gentle weaning is best for both of you.

Edited to say that at 17-months, DS is still nursing. He is randomly *forgetting* to nurse when we are together, except at night, of course . So, I'm using the don't offer, don't refuse theory and letting him set the pace. Seems to work brilliantly for us so far.

Good luck whatever you decide.
post #4 of 8
i just did it!

i weaned from exclusively pumping, but i imagine the process is the same whether you nurse or not.

what i did was in essence relax about pumping altogether. i loosened up my strict schedule, held off on pumps, dropped pumps, pumped for less time- whatever made a particular session easier for me given the time of day, amount of milk backed up in the breasts, etc.

first i dropped my least productive and convenient pump (the one at work) and planned to pump if necessary when i got home. soon it wasn't necessary, and a week or two later i dropped my evening pumps, leaving only the morning pump. once that tapered down enough, i was able to skim morning pumps. that quickly led to once a week and then to nothing.

it may have been easier because i'm pregnant.
my daughter is 19 months old and filled to the brim with breastmilk. she even refused the last bottle i pumped, so she was absolutely ready.
post #5 of 8
I've heard mixed info on mixing formula and EBM. Some say mix because then you transition them in the taste. Others say don't because what if you pump 18 oz and then your daughter only takes 18 oz that day you have used formula you didn't need to and probabily wasted both formula and EBM. I managed to get to one year without formula so I don't know first hand, but I also know that is not always feasible in all situations.
post #6 of 8
Why do you want to wean to formula? Why not wait until your child is eating solids, and you can have daycare substituted a snack and water for one feeding, maybe give half the ebm that feeding if baby isn't eating much, and so on for weaning.
post #7 of 8
How old is your baby? I went back to work when dd was six weeks old. I work four full days. I had intended to express milk until she was nine months (when I start law school).

Well, around four months, I had a break down where I knew I had to cut lots of stuff from my life. I decided to pump only once a day at work. I pump at about 2 or 3 o'clock and get 8 oz, that's half of what she eats at daycare. She gets formula for the other 8 oz. She was pretty unhappy the first day. I was so worried, then the next day, it was no big deal. The babysitter gives her the two bottles of breastmilk first then the formula.

Now she is getting some food too, so that helps to decrease the amount of formula.

You have to look at your life and decide why it is that you want to wean and how to make it work for you.
post #8 of 8
I am currenly weaning my 11.5 mo old from breastmilk. I'm preggo and my body just isn't keeping up. I started increasing the time b/w pump sessions until I could drop one. I did this gradually so I wouldn't have any discomforts and pain. I am now down to 3 pump sessions in 24 hrs. I have been mixing milk w/ my breastmilk since she is turning one in a couple weeks. I'm hoping to have her fully weaned from bm a week or 2 after her 1st b-day.

Jenni
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