Tips For Pumping Breast Milk At Work
The dilemma of breast pumping at work place
Many mothers who have to join the workplace soon again after delivering a baby face embarrassment, confusion and fear because of lack of support for pumping breast milk at work.
I know some moms who had to quit feeding their baby breast milk only because they had to rejoin the work.
My advice is that you need not fear about pumping breast milk or breast feeding at work. I will tell you exactly how to approach your management to not only let you pump your breast milk at office but also help you in doing so!
I will also tell you how you can manage pumping breast milk at workplace without hurting your efficiency.
I will also discuss the why it is good business practice for employers to assist lactating mothers!
Not only that US laws also back lactating mothers and puts onus on business to help breastfeeding and breast pumping moms.
1. Get ready to talk about pumping
You'll need a few discussions with your manager and possibly your colleagues about your arrangements to pumping milk at work.
The most basic need is to have a private and secure space where you can pump milk without the fear of someone intruding.
You also need private space because many people for obvious reason may find the sight of a mother pumping breast milk at work distracting.
In case, a private space is not available you can request the management to provide the same.
Second point of discussion is the need to have dedicated breaks during the office hours for pumping breast milk.
2. Get a schedule
You may need to pump breast milk multiple times during work hours. This obviously means that your work can suffer.
You may have to plan your schedule so that there is a minimal disturbance to your work commitments and your milk supply is not hindered. (Read 12 tips to increase breast milk supply).
If you get breaks during office hours, you can utilize those for pumping.
If that’s not the case, you’ll have to take breaks anyway for pumping. Be sure of discussing these breaks with the manager.
In case you’ve day long seminars and meetings, you are well within your rights to excuse yourself for pumping breast milk.
You can inform the person conducting the meeting or seminar know beforehand that you’re a nursing mother who may need few breaks for pumping milk during the meeting.
This will avoid any confusion or resentment.
3. How can I express milk at work place?
You can express milk at workplace either by hand or by utilizing a pump.
The most efficient and quick way is a double electric breast pump (See top 5 Electric breast pumps here).
You should ideally buy breast pump and spare accessories at least 2 weeks before joining the work.
This way you’ll get familiar with the pump and would have also established a schedule.
Practicing pumping will allows your breasts to get used to 'letting down' when expressing and you can find out the time needed to express milk.
You can also store your expressed milk to have for possible later use, which will take the weight off you for your initial couple of days back at work.
Ensure all gear is sterilized before you begin pumping milk at work place.
Always, carry spare accessories because you may not get time or space to wash and sterilize the breast pump, bottles and accessories while at work.
4. Why should employers assist Breast Pumping at work?
US Laws has put some commitment on businesses to assist nursing mothers during breast feeding and breast pumping.
Regardless of that, there is a business angle to it also.
- As we all know babies who breastfeed have better immunity and get sick lesser then babies who have formula. This way their employee’s baby will get sick less and she won’t need to take leaves because of her kid's sickness.
- Helping lactating moms in this delicate issue will win trust and loyalty of the staff. This will increase staff assurance and faithfulness.
- Female employees will be retained easily and the probability of them returning back to work will be higher. They know they have a management which assists in breast pumping.
- Lower enrollment and preparing costs.
- An additional motivating force to offer potential employees.
5. How can employers assist Breast Pumping moms at work?
Managers can have a strategy to support breastfeeding and breast pumping that incorporates:
- A break allowance with the goal that moms can express milk.
- Provision of a perfect, warm and private room for expressing.
- A refrigerator to store expressed milk.
- Flexible working hours for breastfeeding moms.
Management should also let their employees know about these perks and facilities during the time of hiring and before the employee takes maternity leave.
"Every workplace should proactively assist moms who want to pump breast milk. The management should also sensitize and educate the staff on matters related to lactation and breast pumping at work. This will help in maintaining a positive environment is maintained."
Author: Marissa Claire
Hi, I am Marissa. I am a wife of a very supportive husband and mother 3 precious kids. Even though my life is not picture perfect, I have too many blessings to be counted. I am an ordinary mom who has been through some tough times.
I have tried to collate the best information available and write personal & real reviews for the benefits of parents who are confused with the plethora of breast pumps available. I have made an effort to steer clear of technical jargons and used layman language which is understood by people like us.
Tags: breast pumping at work laws, breast pumping schedules, how to breast pump at work
Categorised in: Guide