× Family & Parenting

can you go 8 hours without pumping?

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5 years 10 months ago #90060 by espm
Hi fellow Moms,
I am returning to work as a hospitalist next month after taking a year off to be a stay-at-home mom. With my new job, I will only be working 1 shift a week to start. My new baby will be 5 months old when I go back to work. Is it possible to go 8-9 hours without pumping (one hospitalist shift) and be OK with regards to maintaining my milk supply? I have pumped while working full-time before and found it to be a pain on the rear. I am thinking that if I only work once a week, I can avoid pumping at work. I plan to nurse my baby right before I leave and immediately when I get back, and also pump 2-3 times a week on days when I'm not working. I guess my question is, has anyone occasionally gone 8-9 hours without breastfeeding or pumping and not had a drop in their milk supply? My baby still gets up once a night to nurse. Thanks.

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5 years 10 months ago #90061 by nerdy
Hi, won't you be uncomfortable (engorged feeling) after 8-9 hours?

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5 years 10 months ago #90063 by lyn2006
I gradually weaned myself to pump only every 8 hours, and then every 12 hours. It was uncomfortable at first, but worth it to me to not pump much at work! It took a few days to adjust (but I am a resident who works 60-65 hrs/week so I pumped a lot!) and my supply regulated to how often I pumped - ie, I still pumped about the same amount of ounces per pumping. So overall my amount decreased, but I was ok with that.

I think it's different for everyone though! Good luck :)

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5 years 10 months ago #90064 by espm
Yes, I probably would be pretty uncomfortable from engorgement. I am worried that if I take time to pump, I'll get behind in my work. Being away from work for a year has made me pretty anxious about going back, even on a very limited basis. Thanks so much for your opinions/advice.

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5 years 10 months ago #90065 by southernmd
Every time I stretched out pumping - I made the same I would have each session no matter when I pumped. Basically, that is how I lost my supply. Mostly I've heard other women tell tales of their experience similar to mine, but I do have a very good friend who is a SLP, and she has a busy busy schedule with three kids in daycare, preschool and regular school. She started pumping in the morning for her youngest and not again the rest of the day, and her body adjusted and pumped like an insane 20 oz in that one pump and never reduced her amount. It was crazy. I'm not sure how you will know ahead of time which lady you will be, but I do believe that my experience is a bit more common.

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5 years 10 months ago #90066 by PeggySue
My experience was like that of southern's - at the very beginning maybe I could make up for lost sessions, but after 6 months or so I would only ever make the same amount per pump session.

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