Ask The Expert: How Much Milk?


Every member of our Customer Service team is a Certified Lactation Counselor (CLC) or an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC), so when you have a problem, they are well-equipped to solve it.

And because sometimes you don’t know what you don’t know, we’d like to share their answers to frequently asked questions to keep you informed.

We are breaking down the questions by subject. Today we are talking about how much milk should you expect to pump.

Meet Kristi Dodson. International Board Certified Lactation Consultant and on our amazing customer service team. (Seriously, if you ever need help, Kristi is just an email away).

Q: How much milk should I expect to pump? 

A: Like so many things with motherhood, this can vary so much from person to person for many reasons. Here are a few factors that contribute to this answer: 

  • A baby’s age matters a lot. Newborn tummies are so tiny, that you may only express a few drops of milk that cover the bottom of a bottle to eventually a few ounces in the first week postpartum. As baby grows, milk production will increase over 4-6 weeks with regular nursing and/or pumping sessions. 
  • It’s a common misconception that breast size affects milk output. Breasts are made up of many different tissues, so storage capacity is determined simply by your body’s unique makeup. There’s no real rhyme or reason.
  • How frequently your breasts are emptied affects production. If you want to increase, nurse/pump more often. Pump/nurse less often if you want to decrease, and keep on keepin’ on if you want things to stay steady. 
  • And, of course, there is nuance. Woman A could pump every 3 hours and get about 3.5-4 ounces each time. So over 24 hours, she would pump 8 times a day to produce 28-32 ounces of milk. Woman B could pump every 6 hours and get about 7-8 ounces per session. So over 24 hours, she would pump 4 times and produce the same 28-32 ounces. Woman A has a smaller capacity than Woman B, which means she’ll have to invest more time into nursing/pumping.

At Babyation, we see you because we’ve lived it, and that’s why everything we do is rooted in our respect for women’s time and work — physical and emotional, paid and unpaid.