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Lets face itpumping at work can be downright difficult. In between lugging your pump back and forth to work and getting semi-topless in a room next door to your boss, its no wonder that for many moms, the end of the maternity leave means the end of nursing. If you find yourself having a tough time, here are some tips and tricks that can help keep you a pump-at-work mama:
1. Purchase a comfortable hands-free pumping bra
A hands free pumping bra allows you to continue typing and talking on the phone (or maybe even just let you zone out and check your Instagram for a few minutes) while you pump. You may not even realize how much of a game changer this bra is until you use it for a while and then forget it one day. A favorite of ours is the Simple Wishes Hands-free Breastpump Bra.
2. Use your Outlook Calendar to schedule your pumping sessions
Be sure to block out time for pumping on your Outlook or other work-related calendar. It’s a helpful reminder to you to maintain your pumping schedule, and if you share your calendar with your co-workers, it can help them respect your time as well. Have fun coming up with entertaining names for your appointments (if the appointment names are set to private) like “Caution: Mom at Work” or “Pump Up the Jam.”
3. Try breast compressions
Running short on time to get finished pumping before your next meeting or just need a little help getting things going? Doing breast compressions while you pump can help stimulate additional let-downs and also help to thoroughly drain all of the milk from your ducts.
4. Up your shield game
The Pumpin’ Pals Super Shields can help you sit more comfortably at your desk chair when pumping by slightly angling the flange down so you don’t have to. The kit comes with 3 different flange sizes so you don’t have to worry about sizing prior to purchasing. The flanges also work with a variety of pumps including Medela, Ameda and Lansinoh.
5. Repurpose your burp cloths
Breast milk can stain so be sure to throw some inexpensive burp cloths into your pumping bag. Throw one across your lap to catch any drips when you remove the flanges. You can also use it to clean yourself up a bit before dressing. In a tight spot, they can also be used as a quick cover for your equipment or bottles when heading to a communal sink or refrigerator. Gerber Cloth Diapers are an easy and inexpensive option.
6. Drink more water
There’s nothing more frustrating than setting up your pump at work and not being able to produce as much milk as you like. So while you may want to reach for another cup of coffee, reaching for a glass of water instead will help keep your milk supply up. Treat yourself to a nice water bottle like this one from Tervis – it will keep your water cold sans condensation and it’s leak-proof so you can throw it in your bag and take it with you wherever you go.
Pumping at work can be challenging but also an incredibly rewarding experience. What other quick tips do you have to make pumping at work easier?
Photo Credit: Cate Thorin