PumpingWorking Pumping Mama

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For breastfeeding moms returning to work…

You’re planning to return to work after your baby is born, but maybe you don’t know exactly what it is you should be planning. Child care, yes. And you want to pump your milk, so you’ll have to learn how your pump works. But is there anything else you need to know? Check out this timeline to see how you can best utilize the time you have during pregnancy and maternity leave to make your return to work as smooth a transition as possible.

Before Your Baby is Born: Prepare

Check in with human resources and ask them where you will be able to pump. Don’t ask if you can pump, ask where you can pump. Learn about the legal rights afforded to breastfeeding mothers in the workplace.

Get your pump ready. Sterilize the pump and get familiar with how it is assembled.

Find an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) you love and schedule a prenatal lactation consultation if you have risk factors.

Birth to Four Weeks: Get a Strong Start

Your primary focus in the first month is making sure breastfeeding is comfortable and effective. Get help ASAP if you are experiencing pain or if you are worried your baby isn’t getting enough to eat.

Two to Six Weeks Postpartum: Practice the Bottle Skill

Practice pumping for an occasional bottle and practice the paced bottle-feeding method. Be sure you register for the live Back to Workshop or the self paced Working Pumping Mamas course.

One to Two Weeks before Your Return: Practice

Schedule a full day and a half day practice day. Schedule one with a partner and one with your childcare provider if possible.

Your First Week Back: Ease in

Ease in if you can. Start on a Wednesday or make a few half days if your schedule permits.