Expressing before bubs is born

Share you hints and tips for expressing and storing breastmilk. Whether expressing just occasionally or exclusively, share and support one another here.
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Expressing before bubs is born

Post by 4fun » Fri Dec 27, 2013 1:56 pm

So I have a few weeks before worrying but my middle suggested I should consider expressing a few weeks before bubs is born in case we have any sugar level issues so they can top up with that instead of formula.

I have always been hopeless at expressing! Max I have ever gotten even with an abundant supply is 20ml in a sitting. So help me out here, how can I make this as successful as possible? I'd be grateful for any tips. I'll be manual expressing too....
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Post by fellare » Fri Dec 27, 2013 2:21 pm

Firstly, call the helpline! They will know how to help!

You don't need a lot. A few mm per feed and you might only need 5 all up in your case. You will probably only get a few drops at a time as that's how colostrum works, so don't stress and I guess do a bit every day? But helpline will know more.
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Post by ClOuD_NiNe » Fri Dec 27, 2013 2:31 pm

I expressed prenatal colostrum both times, and found the 2nd time I was able to get a lot more out. I am pretty crap at expressing milk but found that expressing colostrum was a totally different kettle of fish. I hand expressed anywhere from 1-3ml in a session, into a shot glass and then sucked it up into a syringe. I ended up getting about 30ml in total. Just give it a go, you might be pleasantly surprised at how much you get! You can do an internet search for videos on how to hand express, I found they helped me refine my technique.
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Post by AbbeyCat » Fri Dec 27, 2013 5:38 pm

Totally agree with the other ladies. :smt045 Especially about the fact that you are really only going to be looking at getting a very small number of mls of colostrum in a sitting.

What I found really worked for me, when I had to express colostrum in the hospital, was to have me doing the hand expressing, and a nurse, or DH sucking up the tiny drops with a syringe. Being thick, the drops would just sit on the nipple. It meant I could concentrate on trying to get a good technique going, and I didn't have to worry about catching any of the colostrum. One thing I did do wrong was to go to hard and ended up bruising my breasts. Didn't actually hurt, I could just see bruises on them.

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Post by adk » Sat Dec 28, 2013 8:54 am

I am stressing about this too. I am good at expressing with a machine, but crap at hand expressing, and definitely couldn't do it if DP was sitting with a syringe staring at me while I was doing it! I have been told that using a pump is pretty hopeless for colostrum though. The LC I spoke to wants me to start at 37 weeks so I have time, but I am stupidly really worried about it. I will be really interested in what you find most helpful 3B'B.
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