Pre-Birth Pumping: Can You Express Before Baby Arrives?

Are you a soon-to-be mom who is looking to start expressing milk before the baby arrives? Well, hold on to your lactation bras, because pre-birth pumping might be just what you need!

Pre-Birth Pumping: Can You Express Before Baby Arrives?

But wait...can you even do that? Will it harm your baby or affect breastfeeding later on? Don't worry, mama. We've got all the answers for you.

What is Pre-Birth Pumping?

Pre-birth pumping refers to the act of expressing breastmilk from your breasts before the baby is born. This can be done manually or with a breast pump and can help establish an early milk supply while preparing your body for breastfeeding.

Think of it like flexing your milk ducts in preparation for the big event -- giving birth and feeding your little one!

Why Would Anyone Want to Do That?

Well, there are many reasons why pre-birth pumping might be helpful:

  • If you have a history of low milk supply
  • If you're expecting twins (or even triplets!)
  • If you'll have to go back to work soon after giving birth
  • If nursing didn't work out well with previous babies

And really, any reason at all! Because as every mom knows,you gotta do what works for YOU and YOUR BABY.

How Early Can I Start Pumping?

It's recommended that moms start around 36 weeks pregnant so that they don't trigger any premature labor. Of course,ALWAYS check with your healthcare provider first before trying anything new!

The Pros and Cons of Pre-Birth Pumping

Now let's weigh up some pros and cons:


  1. Helps establish an early milk supply - this means more colostrum rich goodness for baby!
  2. Creates a backup stash - just in case something happens and mommy needs a break and a helping hand.
  3. Can help relieve pressure buildup in the breasts.


  1. It can trigger early labor if done too early - We'll say it again, check with your healthcare provider first!
  2. Overstimulation can cause problems with breastfeeding later on - You want to avoid this as baby instinctually likes playing around down there themselves and that's when really good milk is made!

Tips for Pumping Before Birth

Ok, so now you've decided to give pre-birth pumping a go. What are some tips to make it smoother and more comfortable for you?

Choose the Right Equipment

Make sure you purchase a breast pump or manual expresser that is right for your body shape and size.

The last thing you need is an ill-fitting example "one-size-fit-all" compartment reminiscent of a mediocre produce section like something from 'Death Stranding'.

Know Your Limitations

Don't push yourself beyond what feels comfortable -- Listen up mama, don't get greedy trying squeeze every drop out (no one should be squeezed without consent!). This may lead to discomfort, as well possible nipple trauma leading to other issues down the line.

Additionally know that initially 5 mins might suffice but overstimulating could reduce futre returns leading back towards inconcistency troubles...not worth the extra time/effort!

Store Milk Properly

Remember: safety always comes first!

  • Label each container with date and time of expression & usage period recommendations.
  • Do not store expressed milk longer than recommended guidelines by the manufacturer i.e., ice pack insulator bags do have their limits/wearing out after repeated use periods.
  • Follow appropriate storage temperature management guidance whether hot or cold.

Should I Be Worried About Overexpressing?

In most cases, nope! Your body will regulate production according to demand--just let nature take its course naturally before the arrival of the little one. Mozy on like a cool self-assured cow and trust your body it will not let you down!

Will Pre-Birth Pumping Affect my Baby?

In most cases—NOPE! Breast milk pumped prior to birth differs from that made post-baby-arrivals i.e., less volume, but colostrum-rich in nutrients which generally are provided mostly by breastfeeding immediately following delivery while getting your umbilical cord clipped/checked for any abnormalities.

Can I keep The Milk From Pre-Birth Pumping?

You can store expressed breast milk just as normal; however ideal hygiene protocols must be followed when expressing/maintaining cleanliness whilst pumping...makes sense right?

Safety is key here Mommy!!!

In Conclusion

Pre-birth pumping is an option for moms who want to establish an early milk supply, create a backup stash or relieve pressure buildup in their breasts before baby arrives.

Like all things lactation related -- Do what works best for YOU and YOUR BODY! If you do decide to give pre-birth pumping a try, make sure you have the right equipment, know your limitations and store your milk properly.

Keep calm and carry on milking beautifully proud poultices!!!!!

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