Learn how to express breast milk manually
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Volunteer translation: Emily Queune
In this video you will learn how to express milk by hand.
The idea is to use your fingers to reproduce the same movements as the baby's mouth on the breast.
Remember - the milk ducts are situated under the areola which surrounds the nipple.
It is only when these ducts are compressed by the baby's suction, that the breast will produce milk.
To perform this movement yourself:
*Place a clean container underneath your breast.
*Position your thumb and index finger a few centimetres from the nipple.
*Press gently towards the interior of the breast and against the rib cage, whilst moving your fingers slightly further apart.
*Bring the thumb and index finger forwards and closer together. Be careful: do not squeeze the nipple, you could damage it.
After several movements a few drops of milk should form.
Once the production has started, the milk will flow more freely.
When the flow decreases, reposition your fingers around the areola and restart the back and forth movements.
Once the breast is empty, change sides.
Hand-expressing should never be painful.
During the first 3 to 4 days after giving birth the milk produced will be thick and yellow in colour.
This is colostrum.
The quantity of colostrum produced is very small and it is, therefore, normal to experience difficulties expressing by hand.
You should know, however, that only a few drops of colostrum are sufficient to nourish your baby.