How to extract mother's milk

How to extract mother

Storing mother's milk can be of great help to you, especially if you plan on going back to work or leaving your baby in someone else's care. It might also be useful to have your own milk bank.

The best way to extract milk is with the use of a pump. You can practice this several weeks early so you will find it easier and less stressful.

Storing milk may help you rest for a few moments at home because your partner or other member of your family will be able to feed the baby. Just be sure that they know how to feed the baby before you give them the bottle.

How to use the breast pump
The first thing you need to do is place the cup or nipple protector that comes with the pump over your breast, turn the pump on, let it suction the milk into the connected recipient.

Manual pumps also have a nipple protector for manual instead of motorized extraction.

With an electric pump, it will take between ten and fifteen minutes to empty both breasts, and a manual pump should take up to forty-five minutes.

A good breast pump should not cause you any discomfort because it imitates the baby's sucking. You can purchase a breastfeeding bra that will support your breast and bare it easily without having to undress.

The selection of a pump will depend on how often you use it and how much time you are willing to spend pumping. If you work all day and have to pump your milk in the evening, an automatic pump can be a big help, but if you only need a few ounces of milk once in a while, a manual pump will be fine.

When pumping milk manually, you need to wash your hands very well before beginning. You can also lightly massage your breasts or cover them with warm towels to help the milk flow.

Sit down and lean forward to help the milk flow.

Place your thumb and index finger on each side of your breast to form a kind of wide “U” under your nipple.

Press your fingers against your thorax and gently bring them together. Do not press your nipple, use gentle movements, and do not squeeze.

You can collect the milk in small bags, baby bottles or clean jars. Keep in mind that some household containers may change the composition and quality of the milk. Store the milk in two- and four-ounce portions, or in amounts your baby will drink so as to use every last drop.

If you plan on freezing the milk, don't fill the container or bag to capacity as it will expand slightly when frozen. Always write on the outside of the container, the date of extraction. Place it in the back of the freezer where the temperature tends to be more constant.

The shelf life of the milk depends on where it is frozen. In a household freezer it should last from three to eight days; in a low-temperature household freezer it should last from three to six months, and in a commercial freezer it may last from six to twelve months. Milk that is stored longer than the recommended periods will still be good but it will lose some of its nutritional value.

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