Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Ankle Deep In Paradise
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I've gone on numerous business trips in the past year (my son is 3 1/2, nurses in the morning and evening and maybe more on the weekend), between 2 and 6 nights away, and it gets easier all the time. The first couple of business trips, I needed to express in the morning and the evening (I just did hand expression in the bath), and the most recent trip I was on (3 nights away), I just needed to express in the evening, and not much at that. It was as if my body "knew" not to make more milk and adjusted to the situation, just as it had during other nursing changes (night weaning, etc).
There is a hormone that your milk ducts produce to signal a temporary halt to milk production, and your system will get more finely tuned as you have separations from your nursling. From my experience, I would say that it can definately be done, and the key when you're away is to express if you are engorged-- but not too much, or your body will start producing "make up" milk. You just want to express enough to keep your system active and communication that this is a less milk needed time. It will be fine-- I think that the breastfeeding mechanisms are quite hardy and easily able to adjust to changes in milk demands.
I wouldn't take any supply-enhancing herbs, though-- because these will not "train" your milk ducts to make less milk when it's not needed and will just leave you engorged when your nursling is not around, leaving you to pump. Your nursling will take care of increasing your supply when he is around-- as he empties your breasts, they will make more milk from him. When he's not around to empty them, they will not make more. That's exactly what you want.