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Breast Milk: When Does It Come In?

Breast Milk: When Does It Come In? - PBGS-NY

Breastfeeding is one of the best ways your little baby gets all the necessary nutrients. Breastfeeding a child is one of the strongest connections that a mother has with her child. The female body is perfectly designed to provide all the necessary nutrients for the baby to grow. During the pregnancy, the glands in the breast start to become active and begin to prepare for the process of creating the milk. The breast milk may come in at different times, which all varies from one woman to another.

Does Your Breast Milk Come during Pregnancy

Throughout the pregnancy, the prolactin levels start to increase in order to prepare the body for the production of milk. During pregnancy, hormones like progesterone stop the milk from being expressed. Once you give birth to your child, these hormones do not stop the prolactin from doing its job. This is how your body gets ready for breastfeeding (Read also: What Causes Your Water to Break?).

Generally, in new mothers the breast milk comes after three to four days after giving birth  (Learn also: Assisted Birth). In women, who have already had children in the past, the milk usually comes much earlier.

Reasons Your Breast Milk Is Late

However, in some cases it takes more than four days for the milk to come in. Some of the reasons that can delay the process of milk production are:

  • Having a stressful labor – in cases when you have had a stressful labor or when you have given birth to your child with C-Section, it might take a little bit longer for your milk to come in, usually more than five days.
  • Placenta Fragments – during childbirth, it is possible that some parts of the placenta have remained inside of the uterus. This can interfere with the production of the prolactin and production of the milk. These placenta fragments that are still inside of the uterus interfere and so your body does not get the message that you have already given birth to your child. These placenta fragments are usually removed by your health care provider in NYC without a problem.
  • Diabetes – if you suffer from diabetes, it might take longer for your breast milk to come in, or it can’t come at all. Since your breasts need insulin to create breast milk, they are essentially competing with your body’s need for milk as well.

Stimulate Breast Milk after Delivery

If your breast milk is late, you can try to stimulate it. Usually breast milk is stimulated by nursing every two to three hours. Also, it is very important for you to get enough sleep, eat well and drink lots of water. If nursing does not go well, you can always use breast pumps to stimulate breast milk.

If your milk has not come in even after five days that you have given birth to your child, you should start using formula milk in order to feed your baby.

There is no right or wrong way to feed your baby. Breast milk is perfect for your child and the breastfeeding process will help you bond with your child. You can use formula until your milk arrives or keep using formula.

When Should You Start Breastfeeding Your Child?

If you plan to breastfeed your child, you should start breastfeeding as soon as your baby is born. Breast milk is recommended as the only food for babies during the first six months of their life. It is normal that your child does not latch on immediately. Do not get worried? Sometimes, your child needs a little time for adjustment, as you do. Usually, in the beginning you should breastfeed your child every two to three hours. As the baby grows with months the periods between two breastfeeds goes from two to three hours, into every four, five or six hours.



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This website contains general information about medical conditions and treatments. The information is not medical advice.

If you have any specific questions about any medical matter you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare provider.