B.H. asks from Marietta, GA on September 19, 2008
Breastfeeding and Pumping - Marietta,GA
Background: I breastfeed my baby when we are together. During the week, I pump 4 times a day so my baby has 4 bottles of milk at daycare. She does eat solids along with breastmilk (no formula at all).
Problem: I am going to be going out of town for 5 days at the end of October. There is no possible way I can pump enough milk for those 5 days. She will be 12 months old when I leave.
Does anyone have any advice how to handle our time apart? I don't want to give her formula but I am not seeing any other way right now. I will pump while I am away but that doesn't solve this problem. Help!
A.L. answers from Savannah on September 21, 2008
I've not read the others, so forgive me if i'm repeating, but have you considered cutting the breast milk with whole cows milk? 12 months is when dr's recommend introducing milk. I didn't want to just slap a cup of something brand new on my son, so i did 1/2 and 1/2 for a little bit, then 3/4 milk and 1/4 mommy's milk. it worked fine. (Interestingly, he ended up showing signs of a milk sensitivity when he had just whole milk, but there were no symptoms at all when they were mixed).
K.L. answers from Atlanta on September 20, 2008
You could start gradually switching her over to cow's milk soon so she'll be able to drink it while you are away. You could use goat's milk which is easily digested. My breastfed baby has taken to it just fine. Or you could contact a milk bank and try to get some breast milk from another mother for her. Good luck!
D.T. answers from Atlanta on September 20, 2008
I didn't have time to read the other responses, but just wanted to say that what I always did was to start now pumping extra and put it in the freezer. I actually always kept a larger supply in the freezer and when I happen to travel I can rely on using that while I'm away. It's always worked well for us...
J.S. answers from Savannah on September 20, 2008
can you pump a few more times during the day to build up supply and freeze it??
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K.L. answers from Atlanta on September 20, 2008
At 12 months, I know that the health department (WIC) and most pediatricians tell you to switch over to whole milk. Maybe try that before you leave with 1 or 2 bottles/cups a day? This way you are able to monitor any changes in her (i.e. reaction to milk) and she can have both while you are gone and you'll be able to nurse longer (if that is what you are aiming for here). I remember mixing mine 1/2 whole and 1/2 breast. I kept a few baggies of breastmilk in the freezer for when/if my little guy got sick. Hope this info helps.
L.T. answers from Jacksonville on September 20, 2008
Hi, B.. I have two children, a three year old and a 13 month old. My daughter breastfed until she was two, even though I stopped pumping just after a year. With my son, he is still happily nursing four times a day or so when we are together, and I just weaned from the pump about three weeks ago. Neither ever had formula; I transitioned to whole milk in their cups over a period of about six weeks.
Since your daughter will be a year when you go, I would suggest pumping and freezing extra until your trip. Then, within the next couple of weeks, start introducing whole milk (just mixing a little in with her breastmilk, gradually increasing the ratio) so that she will be used to it when you go and you can stretch your breastmilk with it. Consider switching to a cup, too. That way, she can associate the whole milk mix with the cup and the "good" stuff with mama and will be ready to return to the breast when you get home!
A.P. answers from Atlanta on September 20, 2008
Hi B.. Nice job for feeding your baby the best she can get! I admire your determination to stick to what's best for your little one. You probably already know that WHO recommends breastmilk at least through the first two years, so I think it's wonderful that you're planning ahead for your trip.
Try to throw in some extra pumping sessions whenever you can; you could even pump on one side after your daughter is done, and while she's on the other side. That should increase your supply enough to store enough away while you're gone. Also, try eating extra oatmeal...I hear that helps increase supply.
I didn't give any cow's milk to my first until she was over 18 months, and my second has never had cow's milk. There's no need at all for cow's milk; once she's weaned, she should be fine on table food like the rest of us. Take a look at www.askdrsears.com for other tips! Have a great trip!
K.B. answers from Columbia on September 20, 2008
I am in a similar situation. I breastfeed my 8-month-old daughter, work part-time (and pump while at work), and am preparing to be gone 2 1/2 days at the begining of October. I have some frozen breastmilk stored up and am trying to pump more between now and then, but like you, will not have enough to cover my time away. What I've decided to do is have my husband give her a combination of formula and breastmilk together when he feeds her. I've been told that the enzymes in the breastmilk will help her digest the formula better. My preference has also been to give her only breastmilk, but formula is not bad(just not as good as breastmilk), and if I have to be gone, it is more important to me that she be well-nourished than that I be the one providing all of her nourishment (especially since she gets some nourishment from solids now, anyway). I had trouble breastfeeding at first and really worked to make it happen, so this was not an easy position to come to, but the more important thing for me now is to make sure I pump enough while I am gone for her to be able to continue to breastfeed when I return. If you are doing the same, just think how much milk you will bring back to her, which will keep this from being a problem in the future! : ) By the way, if you are flying, I have it from the TSA itself that you can bring as much breastmilk as you like on the plane, whether or not your baby is with you. Just declare it to the security people and the ticket person before you board. Hope it goes well!
C.S. answers from Columbia on September 20, 2008
I agree with the person who said to just pump extra now and store it. If you did one extra bottle a day (I know, as if you don't have anything else to do, right?), but anyway, one extra bottle a day between now and then you should have 20-30 bottles depending on when you leave.
Also, normally daycares want children on cup only by the time they are a year old. So, during now and then they could start phasing out one of the bottles a day, and then take it down to maybe two bottles a day while you are gone. That way she could have more of the extra bottles you have pumped for the evenings and nights when you will still be wanting to nurse her.
I nursed my first son for the first year, and hated the idea of giving him formula, but I did home day care on a military post when he was 1, so I had to use a cup during the day (they had strict guidelines). I decided that until I thought he was ready it would be better to use a little good formula than to go right to cows milk from breast milk. Also, I mixed a small amount of formula with breast milk I had pumped. It made it easier for him to get used to and digest. That would also extend the amount of breast milk you have. I will also say that I was unable to continue nursing my youngest after 6 weeks. I was somewhat devastated, but he is thriving on formula-- contrary to what I thought. ;-)
Good luck and happy traveling!
M.B. answers from Columbus on September 20, 2008
Breastmilk is on a 72 hour demand schedule. If you start by adding an extra pumping now within a few days your milk supply will increase to accomodate and you should have a little more to pump. If you can add more pumping or nursing than that should help with your supply to be able to get extra to cover the extra bottles. Read some Breastfeeding books and they should help with the details. All I know is that I read that as long as you have some milk you can recreate your supply to make any hungry baby happy.. Good Luck.
T.L. answers from Savannah on September 20, 2008
At 12 months of age you should be starting regular milk so there is the solution.