I am currently bfing my son and try to pump a little extra so that his dad can give him a bottle once a day. Sometime over the next couple of weeks I want to start pumping exclusively to prepare for when I am going back to work. How much bm should I save for each feeding? Space is limited in the freezer and refrigerator and I don't want to save a bunch of small bags unless that is how much he will use for a feeding.
How old is your baby. For a baby of 2 or more months a good amount per feed would be about 3-4 oz. My daughter is now just over a year old and she still drinks only 4 - 5 oz per feed.
Another tip is to freeze the milk in icecube trays. Or you can also get the long icetubes that are meant to freeze ice that will be put into a water bottle. Freeze in these then when frozen transfer to ziplock bags. Then you can just take out what you need.
However if pumping goes well you can pump what you need at night and in the morning / during work and that will be the milk you use the next day.
As I said DD is now just over 1. Here is what I do:-
I now pump in the evenings when I get home from work or a bit later depending what I'm doing (I get about 5 oz), in the mornings when I get up (about 4-5 oz) and once at lunch time (also about 5 oz). So my total pumping in 3 sessions is 12 - 15 oz.
I also directly BF my daughter 3 or 4 times when I'm with her (she doesn't get the bottle while I'm home). Before sleeping, upon waking up in the morning, lunchtime, as soon as I get home from work and occassionally in between if she is upset or something. On the weekends when I'm with her all the time she just bfs directly, but I also try to pump 1 bottle fo 5 oz (not always possible) to put in the freezer for emergencies (if I have to travel, can't get home at lunch time etc). I also have limited freezer space. I have only about 60 oz of milk (2 - 3 days supply) in the freezer. We date it so we always use the oldest first.
The 12-15 oz that I pump is enough for while I'm at work (I work from 9 - 1 (she has 1 bottle before sleeping at 11), lunch break I go home to pump and BF my daughter directly (I live less than 10 min walk from my office), then 2 -- 7 (she will drink 2 bottles). When I'm home I BF her directly.
She eats solids now, but still gets most of her fluids from breast milk.
dd is almost 6 months old. She is taking the same amount of milk that she was taking by 2 months, which is around 4 ounces every 2 to 2 1/2 hours. Some days are a little hungrier, and she may take 4.5 or even 5 ounces on occasion.
When space is limited, I actually recommend the breastmilk freezer bags. If you lay them flat in the freeze, you can stand them up once frozen, or stack them laying down. It takes up much less space. I then put them (about 10 bags) into a gallon sized ziplock to keep them all together.
exclusively pumping is an option (that is what I do), but you can also try doing both pumping and nursing like Sally described. I know many women on this forum have managed to do that successfully. If you don't have much space to store milk, that may be a good option for you since you'll have less being stored for feeds.
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