When a baby begins to nurse, it triggers nerves in the nipple, which in turn releases hormones (prolactin and oxytocin) to produce and then push out or “let-down” the milk. This let-down reflex can occur by thinking about, looking at, or hearing your baby. Sometimes simply looking at a photograph of any baby can stimulate let-down.How long it takes can vary from woman to woman or even from feeding to feeding, but it’s usually anywhere from a few seconds to a few minutes.
Without suitable spaces available to pump or nurse, breastfeeding can become a real challenge for nursing mamas.
Did you know?
- Stress, as well as the environment and atmosphere in which a mom nurses or pumps, can affect milk supply and make nursing or pumping more difficult.
- As older babies become more aware of their surroundings, they often become much more easily distracted which can interfere with successful nursing and the ability to fully empty the breasts.
- When a mom is away from home and her baby for an extended period of time (be it hours or days), pumping helps to increase and maintain milk production. And while pumping every 2 to 3 hours is ideal, many working moms find that they can only pump during morning, lunch, and afternoon breaks.
- If a mom is unable to nurse enough to fully empty her breasts or pump when her breasts are full, this can result in engorgement of the breasts. Engorgement is a very painful condition that makes it challenging for the baby to latch on and can cause painful nipples, fever, and swollen lymph nodes. Unrelieved engorgement can cause a low milk supply, plugged ducts, mastitis, or a serious breast abscess.
- The best environment to breastfeed in is one in which you feel comfortable. For many women this will be in a calm, undistracted setting with control of privacy.
Mamava provides a clean, comfortable, private place to pump or nurse, helping more mothers meet their breastfeeding goals.Tweet @mamava, and let us know where you best let-down or where you need a Mamava (#IWantMyMamava) to better let-down!