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Do I need to express milk?

If your baby is feeding well and you and your baby can be together for all feeds there's no need for you to express unless you want to. ⁠

Breasts make milk based on demand, you do not need to stimulate them to make more if everything is going well. ⁠

Hand expressing is a good technique to know in case you have a blocked duct, need to express for some reason or are engorged due to bub sleeping longer than usual. ⁠

Some mums will be advised to express or pump milk to help increase supply. The more milk that is removed from the breasts, the more they will be stimulated to make. Make sure that you are getting support if you are trying to increase your supply by expressing so you don't end up with oversupply or engorged breasts. And don't be alarmed if you are not expressing large amounts, babies are much more effective at removing milk than most pumps!⁠

If you do need to pump for any reason - either to feed your baby, store for other carers to use, because you're returning to work or to increase your supply - it is a really good idea to check the flange size as it is not uncommon for women to be using a size too big or too small which leads to problems. ⁠


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