Many mothers are not new at being moms—in fact, many tried-and-true pumping pros out there have been through this before. Still, some things are different with your second child simply because they are a different human being than your first. Differences may include milk supply or nursing habits, leading to more or less pumping. Read on to discover ways pumping may differ the second time and answer other related questions.
Breastfeeding May be Different
All babies are born with unique instincts, and your second child may have different inclinations than your first regarding breastfeeding. They may encounter a tongue tie that keeps them from feeding or have other routines and preferred positions.
As a mom, you might produce more milk with your second child. All these factors mean that you’re possibly pumping more than you did your first time, so prepare by preparing your pumping supplies during pregnancy.
Using the Same Pump
While we don’t recommend using someone else’s breast pump, you can reuse your own. If you’re planning to have a second child and want to store your pump long-term, keep it in its container in a cool, dry place like in a food-grade container or a snaplock bag. You’ll need to replace all silicone and soft plastic parts before reusing a breast pump with a second child – valves, valve membranes, backflow protector membranes, and teats. You can reuse any hard plastic breast pump accessory for a second child, such as breast shields and bottles.
Make sure your pump still works, then clean it thoroughly before reusing. Many insurance providers will give you a pump included with your plan with every pregnancy—Pumps for Mom can help you determine if you qualify.
Can You Pump While Pregnant?
If you’re pregnant but still nursing your first child, you may be wondering about pumping during pregnancy. There’s a lot of conflicting information, so we recommend talking to your health care provider. The main concern is that nipple stimulation may produce hormones that cause uterine contractions, leading to pre-term labor. The data around this depends on the study, so make a choice you feel is safest for your family.
Pumping While Parenting a Toddler
If your older child is still nursing, tandem nursing is possible. Otherwise, if you have another young child who requires a lot of care, your primary concern is keeping them out of your hair so you can effectively express your breast milk. Some children may start trying to grab at you while breastfeeding, as they’re used to being the only child getting your attention.
Be prepared for your toddler to ask to breastfeed too, and have an answer ready depending on your level of comfort.
When possible, feed your baby in another room. It’s okay for your toddler to remain nearby as long as they don’t interfere with the feeding or pumping storage—remind them how important they are and that they can help and take care of an essential job by letting you nurse or pump in peace.
At Pumps for Mom, we’re here to help with all your pumping needs, no matter how many kids you have. If you need to purchase a breast pump or see if you qualify for a free one through insurance, reach out today with any questions. Good lucking pumping—you got this, mama!