Hello! My name is Desiree Ahrens and I am a new moderator to this group. I am the Employee Well-Being Advisor for the DAHLC in Rochester, MN where I also lead pregnancy and postnatal programs. Outside of my role at Mayo Clinic, I am a Board Certified Lactation Consultant and current Chair-Elect of the MN Breastfeeding Coalition. My husband, twin 8 year old boys, and 6 year old daughter live in Rochester. I had the WORST time breastfeeding my twins and the BEST time breastfeeding my daughter. This is what led me to become an IBCLC! I look forward to connecting with all of you as you navigate breastfeeding, work, and family! Please introduce yourselves below. Glad to have you!
Interested in more discussions like this? Go to the Employees and Learners Lactating group.
My name is Bettina and I have an 8.5 month old at home. I also just started working at Mayo Clinic 4 Months ago. I love breastfeeding my son for the connection you get with him but absolutely hate pumping at work. Anyone else?
Hi! I am Paige Miller and have two kids (3 year old son and 4 month old daughter). I had a great experience breastfeeding my son, and so far things have well with my 4 month old daughter. I enjoy breastfeeding, but don't love pumping 😉
Hello Everyone! I am Lindsey Marx, I work in the Southwest MN Region for Mayo Clinic Health System and have 3 children. An 11 year old girl, an almost 3 year old girl and a 10.5 month old boy. I BF my oldest for 3 months and as a young mother ended up dropping off. At that time I was living in Roseville, MN and am so thankful for the home nurse visit that I had available to me because I am sure I would have ended up with mastitis and stopped breastfeed before those 3 months. Now as an older mother I have enjoyed breastfeeding my 3 year old until she was one and am going to reach my goal of BF my youngest until one also.
While I don't necessarily enjoy pumping at work I take the time to reframe it as a good reason to take breaks during the day and know that I am able to and supported by my employer to provide the best nutrition for my little guy. I am also grateful that my body is able to produce enough milk because for some others that is a challenge.
I have dealt with many occurrences of plugged ducts, especially 2-3 years ago with my middle daughter. If anyone else experiences that my Lactation consultant said that some women have a higher fat content in their milk that can make them prone to plugged ducts and that taking a Lecithin supplement can help reduce the occurrence of that. Desiree do you have any suggestions for preventing plugged ducts?
Yeah, pumping really does suck, pun intended! However, I do enjoy a few minutes of alone time regularly scheduled.
Thank you for sharing your story, Lindsey! Great advice to reframe the time you are spent pumping into a values affirmation.
The best way to prevent plugged ducts is to get the milk out, either by pumping or by baby. The biggest influence is skipped feedings or not fully draining the breast. However, some moms, like Lindsey, are getting the milk out and still having issues.
While breastfeeding, try a different position for baby to be latched. We tend to use the same position every time and switching where baby’s chin is on your breast can switch up to drain a different area more efficiently.
While pumping, compress and hold the area behind the duct as you pump (don’t rub as this can lead to blisters).
If these don’t work and you are considering taking a supplement or medication, talk to a Lactation consultant in person or call your provider. While these things can help, it can also help too much and we want to make sure we get a full history before recommending anything else.
What other tricks and tips have worked for other moms with plugged ducts?
I agree – good reframe of the pumping time! While pumping itself isn't glorious, I did relish the opportunity to just sit quietly for a few minutes at day, for sure!
As for the plugged ducts, my lactation consultant had similar advice as Des gave: rotate the position of your baby to drain different portions of your breast. One of the things I found most helpful was to position the baby's chin toward the plugged duct. This has led to some creative positioning over the four kids I've BF for a year each, for sure, but totally does the trick! Directing the hot water during your shower onto the plugged duct and gently massaging the "rock" for a few minutes also helped a lot for me.
Hi! My name is Beth Flattum. I have four children (10, 7, 4, and 1) and have had the opportunity to BF each of my children for at least one year each. My 15-month old daughter is still nursing, although we're down to just first thing in the morning and I feel like we might be near the end as she's losing interest (yet some days still craves that snuggle). Very bittersweet feeling, for sure!
While I'm on the tail end of my BF journey, I still like being connected to this community – happy to share hints/tips as I can. I haven't eliminated the possibility of someday pursuing certification as a lactation consultant…someday… 🙂
Hi! My name is Teresa. I have a 16, almost 3, and 10 months old biological children. My fiancé has almost 15, almost 10, and 8 year old. I breast feed my oldest for about 3 months (I was only 19.) Now that I'm older and wiser lol. I breastfeed my almost 3 year old till my 10 month old was born. I am still breastfeeding my 10 month old. I enjoy breastfeeding and I also do NOT enjoy pumping.
Hi Beth! How is nursing going a month later-share any tips you have with the rest of us! There isn't much discussion about nursing our kiddos over a year, so we appreciate any insights you can share. How is it different now?
I love this, Teresa! I actually heard about breast pump hack-a-thon where the goal was to make the breast pump not suck! A bunch of professionals got together, including engineers. What a great idea! https://www.makethebreastpumpnotsuck.com/