1. Get a good quality pump. Using a double electric pump will make pumping faster and easier. They can be pricey, but your insurance may cover the cost, or you may be able to rent one. Using a pumping bra, or making your own, will let you be hands free so you can multitask, or you know, check Facebook.
2. Mimic baby's feeding pattern. During the first three months of your baby's life, your milk will be regulating. In order to produce enough breast milk while exclusive pumping, you want to mimic baby's feeding pattern. Try to pump every 2-3 hours (yes, even through the night) to keep up with baby's needs. Also, try to pump for at least 15-20 minutes, even if milk output diminishes. This can often trigger a second letdown. By completely emptying the breast of milk, it sends a signal for the breast to produce more.
3. Use a setting that is comfortable. Your pump should have different speed settings. Higher settings does not necessarily mean more milk! Keep it at a setting that you find comfortable to avoid damaging the nipples or areola. It is also safe to use lanolin on your nipples while pumping.
5. Boost your supply. There are a number of ways to boost breast milk supply. Try not to supplement with formula unless necessary. Increase the number of times a day you pump. You can even eat certain foods and herbs to help increase supply. Check out our handy article: How to Boost Breast Milk Supply, for the full list.
6. Refrigerate pump parts. This can cut down on pumping time throughout the day. Breast milk is good in the fridge for approximately one week. Instead of giving your pump parts, bottles, etc a thorough washing after every single pumping session, put the pump parts in the fridge after day time sessions. Then at night, you can give everything a good wash for the next day.