power-pumping-300x162One of the top reasons that women stop breastfeeding is that they are afraid they’re not producing enough milk for their baby.  “Some women will swear by supplements, herbs or oils to increase their supply, but there’s no evidence-based research that those methods actually increase a woman’s milk supply,” says Molly O’Neill, Registered Nurse and Certified Lactation Counselor with Women’s Health Specialists.  “Not to say those methods won’t work, but it’s safe to say that different women would see different results.”

“Power pumping is a technique that has been shown to increase supply in women.  It’s a method that essentially mimics a growth spurt; the more frequent and vigorous feedings sends a message to the pituitary gland to make more milk,” commented Molly.

To power pump, pick one regular pumping session during the day or night to replace with a power pumping session using the following pattern:

  1. Pump for 20 minutes, rest for 10 minutes
  2. Pump for another 10 minutes, rest for 10 minutes
  3. Pump one more time for 10 minutes

“In total, you’ll be pumping 40 minutes in a 60 minute period,” says Molly, “For all of your other pumping sessions, use your routine pumping method.  I’ve heard some women say that incorporating power pumping for three consecutive days or nights does the trick, and others it can take a week to see results. “

The breastfeeding journey is a big commitment, complete with its own set of joyful and challenging moments.  The key is perseverance and a strong support system.  If you have any questions regarding breastfeeding, contact Molly for support at 920-749-4000.