Wife, Mummy, Nurse: Pumping and Storing Breastmilk {#BFBlogHop}

08 November 2012

Pumping and Storing Breastmilk {#BFBlogHop}

I went back to work PRN when my daughter was 6 weeks 3 days old.  Needless to say, it was hard.  I wanted to avoid giving Charis formula.  I bought a manual pump to try and get all the liquid gold I could and save it up in the freezer.  Looking back, the biggest thing I would have done differently would be to buy a double electric breast pump, preferably a Hygeia breast pump.  On my first day back, I had about 30-40 ounces of breast milk in the freezer; Charis drank over 20 ounces.  I was only able to pump 8-10 ounces while at work, because I could get off the floor once.  Before leaving the floor, I always washed my hands and would wash them again when arriving in the employee pumping room on Labor and Delivery.

I used Lansinoh freezer bags and labeled them with how much I pump and on what date the milk was pumped.  I immediately put the bags in the freezer when I returned home.  I asked Many FB respondents stated to use bags and lay them down for easier storage and to help with space.

La Leche League International's Storage Guidelines are:
Preferably, human milk should be refrigerated or chilled right after it is expressed. Acceptable guidelines for storing human milk are as follows. Store milk:
  • at room temperature (66-78°F, 19-26°C) for 4 hours (ideal), up to 6 hours (acceptable) (Some sources use 8 hours)
  • in a refrigerator (<39°F, <4°C) for 72 hours (ideal), up to 8 days (acceptable if collected in a very clean, careful way)
  • in a freezer (-0.4 to -4°F, -18 to -20°C) for 6 months (ideal) up to 12 months (acceptable)
Since I did not have to work full time, last night on my Facebook page I asked, "Do any of you have any tips for pumping and storing breastmilk?"  Most of those who responded recommended laying breast milk storage bags down for easier storage, helping preserve space, and easier thawing.  Another stated,
I use the Milkies milk catcher. So, every time I let down when I nurse, I get 1-2 oz of milk, on the non-nursing side, that is caught. As soon as i get a bottles worth, it goes in a storage bag in the freezer. So, I don't have to pump! I have tons of milk in the freezer just from collecting milk all day!

Did you pump breastmilk?  If so, what tips do you recommend? 
Join us at Sisters 'N Cloth for this weeks #BFBlogHop.
Next week's topic is on "Breastfeeding and Holiday Challenges".

1 comment:

  1. Lol! I love that I'm not the only one who thought that laying down the baggies for storage was a HUGE improvement! Thanks for listing the acceptable guidelines for storing human milk, too. :) ~Jeniffer