The One Sign That Power Pumping Isn't Working

by Kristina Johnson

One of the most stressful things about breastfeeding is trying to figure out if you're making enough milk to satisfy your baby. Many moms deal with a drop in their supply at some point, especially as their baby gets older and wants to nurse less often in favor of solid food. Moms who head back to work or deal with lots of stress can may also see their supply take a hit. When women find themselves in one of these situations, they may turn to power pumping to boost their supply. It can be highly effective for some, but there's one sign that power pumping isn't working for you.

According to Pregnancy, Birth and Beyond, power pumping involves staying hooked up to your pump over the course of an hour. You begin by pumping for 20 minutes, then resting for 10 minutes. You then pump for 10 more minutes, and rest for another 10. You wrap up with one last 10 minute pump session. Lanisoh noted that power pumping in the morning might be most productive, because that's when your supply is usually at its high point. You won't necessarily see much of a boost the first day you test it out, and Lactation Services of Connecticut pointed out that you should plan on power pumping for at least three days in a row. If you're following all those suggestion closely, Fed Is Best noted that your breastmilk supply could increase by as much as 50 percent within a few days.


If you've followed all those instructions and your supply isn't rising after a week or so, unfortunately power pumping may not be effective for you. That doesn't meant that boosting your supply is a lost cause, however. Some women's bodies just don't respond well to the pump, according to Kelly Mom. But you have some other options. Ask Dr. Sears noted that the best way to get your supply up is to nurse as much as you possibly can. If that's not possible, Belly Belly suggested eating foods like fenugreek, oats, and nuts to make more milk. And if nothing else is working, you can talk to your doctor about getting a prescription medication that may get the results you want, according to Kelly Mom.