Removing more milk from the breasts
One easy way to increase your milk output with pumping is by breast massage and compression while pumping. One study found when mothers used their hands while pumping they were able to get 48% more milk than without using their hands! Their milk also had more fat in it
Steps to hands on pumping:
1. Massage both breasts. Massage both breasts using small circles in a spiral pattern (similar to a self-breast exam). Milk is made at the back of the breast, so focus on the back and sides of the breast. Stroke the breasts from the chest wall down toward the nipples. Use a light touch to help you relax and to help stimulate your let down.
2. Pump both breasts at the same time (double pump). Start in the stimulation (fast/light suction) mode of your pump. Gently compressing your breasts while pumping. Pay special attention to areas where you feel lumps (these are full milk ducts). Using medium pressure, stroke your breast from the outer margin in toward the pump to empty the ducts. After 1-2 minutes switch to the express (slow/higher suction) mode for 4-6 minutes. Switch back to the stimulation mode for another 1-2 minutes and then back to the expression mode for another 4-6. Keep alternating settings until milk flow slows to a trickle.
3. Massage your breasts again, concentrating on areas that still feel full.
4. Finish by either hand expressing your milk into the pump’s nipple tunnel or single pumping (one breast at a time) whichever yields the most milk. Either way, during this step, continue to compress the breast from chest to nipple on each breast, moving back and forth from breast to breast several times until you’ve drained both breasts as fully as possible.