hy do woman's
breasts get so big when they are pregnant?
One of the first indications of her pregnancy that a woman has might
be the swelling and extra sensitivity in her breasts. The breasts have
a major job to do and only 9 months to do it in. They have to continue
to develop, beyond that adult stage that all women will eventually reach.
She has to be able to provide enough milk to feed her infant. Some women
with smaller sized breasts revel in the fact that they actually "have
some boobs". The breasts will return to near pre-pregnancy size when
the child no longer breastfeeds.
How does milk get through the nipple while breastfeeding (wouldn't
there be blood too)?
Blood forms the milk inside the lobules. Blood and milk are separated
and only the milk is allowed out of the lobules and into the lactiferous
ducts. Sometimes, a lactating mother passes blood from the breast with
the milk. That is caused by abnormal situations, and should be checked
by your personal care giver professional.
What is foremilk?
Foremilk is the milk that is waiting in the ampullae, behind the nipple,
and is the first milk that the infant gets from the breast at each feeding.
It is what gets the infant interested in feeding, and keeps him/her
interested until the "let-down" reflex allows more milk to be produced.
When should you stop breastfeeding?
Breastfeeding specialists today are recommending that we try to breastfeed
our babies for at least a full year. Many mothers go much longer than
that, but most fall short of that expectation. Today, many new mothers
would like to stay home with their infants, but they are forced by economic
reasons or various emotional or physical reasons to go back to the daily
work force. It is recommended that if that happens, the mothers attempt
to continue breastfeeding, by utilizing the breastfeeding stations that
are becoming a part of our workplace. Encourage employers to put these
stations at the mothers' disposal. If that is not available, mothers
can express their breastmilk by hand or with machines and store the
milk in a refrigerator until the child's sitter or nanny can come by
the workplace and pick it up, administering it with a baby bottle. Sometimes,
children may decide for themselves that they no longer want their mother's
milk and they may partially or totally abandon the breast for solid
foods. There is no upper limit to the duration of breastfeeding. It
is usually determined by practicality or the child's demands. Breast milk
supplies all nutrients the child will need, for as long as the child
Do you have to breastfeed?
No one HAS to breastfeed, but most experts feel that breastfeeding
will give infants a better start in life.
Is breastfeeding better for the baby than mix (formula)?
According to the experts, there are some vital elements that are present
in breast milk that are not in baby formula.
If someone were to suck on a breast does milk start flowing?
No, unless the woman is lactating.
Is if bad if someone else (not the baby) sucked on a nipple?
Milk consumed by anyone other than the infant may jeopardize the supply
for the infant. If that is not a concern, some couples do share in this
Is breast milk drinkable by anybody?
Breast milk is consumable by any human. Some older children or adults
must get breast milk from a Milk Bank for their sensitive stomach or
Where does breastmilk come from in the breast?
Milk is made from blood in the Lobules (acini), and then it flows down
the lactiferous ducts to the ampullae and the nipple.
Why would the breast start leaking milk?
When the woman is expecting to feed the infant, and the infant is asleep
or not available, the milk builds up pressure and leaks out of the nipple.
Sometimes just hearing a baby cry will cause the lactating mother to
experience a reflex action called the "Let-down" reflex, which allows
her milk to exit from her nipples with no contact with the breast.
After a mother has given birth, when do the breasts stop producing
When she stops expressing the milk. A woman will produce breast milk
for twenty, thirty or more years, as long as there is a constant need for it.
Even when a woman is not pregnant, is there still milk in her breasts?
Not until she has gone through the pregnancy and delivered the child.
After delivery, as long as the milk is expressed as often as an infant
would normally take it, the woman will produce milk. Once she stops
expressing the milk, the breasts will stop lactating, until pregnancy
occurs again. Lactation can be brought on by repeated expression of
her breasts at a constant rate for weeks or months of time. This should
occur as often and as frequently as if she were breastfeeding a newborn
Can you buy breast milk?
There are Milk Banks, just like Blood Banks. Excess milk from lactating
mothers is often donated to the bank. It is available to infants in
need, and may either be free or offered at a minimal charge.
What happens to the milk if a mother aborts?
Whenever an abortion (either clinical or spontaneous) occurs,
if she does not express the milk from her breasts, the breasts
stop developing their acini tissues and they return to their pre-pregnancy condition. If the
abortion, miscarriage, or pre-mature birth occurs during the latter
part of the pregnancy, the breasts will produce colostrum, followed
by milk in 2 to 3 days, if the contents of the breasts are expressed.
If they are not, the breasts will back-off in a few days, and return
to their pre-pregnancy condition.
Do both breasts produce milk?
Yes, normally, but do not necessarily produce the
same quantity of milk.
Does a mother have to switch between breasts during breastfeeding?
It is customary to feed from the left breast for half the time, then
finish at the right one. Then the next feeding, you start with the right
breast, and finish with the left. This will allow each breast to share
the aggressive sucking when the baby begins, and each breast will be
equally emptied at least every other feeding.
If you don't breast feed the baby, will the breasts swell up?
If the mother decides not to breastfeed her infant, her breasts will
not be emptied after they start producing milk. This will cause the
breasts to stop producing milk, and the breasts will return to near
pre-pregnancy size. When the milk is not removed from the breasts, they
will become engorged and swell, usually causing discomfort and pain.
After several days, the breasts will "give up" trying to produce
milk and become smaller and less painful. There are methods that the
mother may choose to use to help to relieve that pain.
Why do babies need breastfeeding?
Breasts were designed with the intent for them to breastfeed their
young. Many women do not breastfeed their infants. If the mother does
in fact elect to breastfeed, there are many advantages for her and for
the infant. The colostrum that the mother produces during the first
24-48 hours is very critical. It conveys many of the mother's vital
immunities to the infant, giving the child a better start in life and
a more complete development.
Is it true that breastfeeding a child makes it smarter?
Recent studies have suggested that to be true.
How do you get milk from the breasts?
By manual expression, where pressure is placed on opposing sides of
the breast, at a point about one to one and a half inches back from
the nipple. Also, a breast pump may be used. They are either manual
or electrical, and may be single or double to pump both breasts at the
same time. The third way is the obvious one, where the infant uses a
combination of mild suction and a rolling tongue pressure to extract milk. The nipple
is actually well into the mouth during successful breastfeeding.
Does breastfeeding hurt?
Yes, it often can, at least until the mother and the baby get used
to doing it. It will be especially true if the mother does not immediately
learn how to get the baby to "latch on" to the breast properly. The
baby's tongue must put pressure on the areola of the breast and press
the end of the breast up against the roof of the baby's mouth. If the
baby only sucks or puts pressure on the nipple, it will cause some
injury to the nipple. Also,
the mom needs to keep the nipples dry by air-drying them, after they
When you breastfeed, will the milk come out when it's time for the
baby's feeding time and he's not there to drink?
Sometimes, when the mother's body is ready to feed the infant, but
the infant is not there or is still asleep, the mother's breasts start
producing milk, but there is no place to store it up. If the mother
hears a baby cry (any baby), it may signal her brain to "let down" the
milk, by activating what is known as the 'let-down reflex', which 'allows'
the breast to release the milk. Milk will actually flow out of the nipple
("leaking") at this time, sometimes actually squirting. Breast pads in a nursing
bra will usually absorb that wasted milk.
Does the size of the breast have anything to do with the amount of
milk the mother has?
No. All breasts have about the same amount of milk producing glands,
no matter what the size of the breast. Larger breasts just have more fatty tissue.
Women with small breasts should not be discouraged from breastfeeding.
If a woman gets implants and they pop while she's breastfeeding, can
the baby get poison by breastfeeding?
It would depend upon what the liquid is that is filling the breast
implant. The liquid does not flow directly out the nipple. It would
be absorbed into the mother's system and bloodstream, and then sent
back to the breast and possibly passed out along with the milk. If this has actually happened,
it would be a rare situation.
Is breast milk healthier than normal milk? Why is regular milk bad
for young babies?
What you are referring to as "Regular Milk" or "Normal Milk", I assume, is cow's milk? That was
made for baby cows. Baby humans need human milk. Human babies have enough
trouble trying to digest cows milk when they are infants that cow's
milk can cause serious digestive problems, as well as other problems.
What are the advantages of breastfeeding?
There are many advantages of breastfeeding, both for the mother and
for the infant. Read what we have in
and check out our favorite breastfeeding link to learn about what they
are. Find that at
When a woman has a child and breastfeeds it, how do you know when
the milk will come out or not? Can you control this?
The mother tends to develop a schedule that is similar to the requirements
of the infant, and when the baby is getting hungry, her body is usually
ready to produce milk. The breasts do not have a large supply of milk
The breast makes milk as quickly as the infant requires it. A sort of
"on-demand" feeding system.
How long does one feeding take?
Generally, about 15 to 25 minutes, depending on how well the baby is
taking the milk, how well he/she is "latched on", how sleepy or hungry
he/she may be, etc. Sometimes the mother may have the baby remain at
her breast for a period of time when it is not sucking. That allows them
some nice private time. It is great for "bonding".
What is the correct way to breast feed a baby?
There is a lot of information that a person needs to know before they
can be successful at breastfeeding. Read what we have in Breastfeeding,
and check out our favorite breastfeeding link ( www.Breastfeeding.com
). If you have any trouble
breastfeeding your infant, ask for help immediately. Hospitals offer
"lactation consultants" to help you get started. Make sure you understand
how to get the baby to "Latch On" properly. Drop us a line here and we
will address your concerns as quickly as we can.
What is colostrum?
Colostrum is a whiteish/yellowish liquid that comes
from the mother's breast for the first two or three days after the
mother gives birth. It contains very important minerals and anti-bodies
that the baby really needs to build up its own natural immune system. It
may not look like it but it is sufficient to maintain the infant's
nutrition level until the breast milk begins flowing several days after
Where does the milk in a woman come from? How is it produced?
The lobules (acini or alveoli) in the mother's breast forms milk from
the mother's blood. It is produced when the baby is requesting it by
latching onto the breast.
Is a baby's development impaired if it is not breastfed?
It can be, to some degree. Breastfeeding advocates list many reasons
that support this statement.
Is breastfeeding important for young children?
Breastfeeding is very beneficial to the infant. Take a look at
to see what many of these benefits are.
What is found in a mother's milk that is not found in formulas in
There are several minerals and chemicals that the mother's milk contains
that cannot be duplicated in baby formula. Also, mother's milk carries
some of her built-up immunities to diseases, that protects the baby,
and that means that the baby does not have to contract certain diseases
to build up anti-bodies.
A waxy-like material that is excreted by the sebaceous glands in the
nipple and areolar area of the breast. It helps to lubricate and protect
the nipple and areola from drying out and from cracking. Air-drying
the nipple area and then rubbing the area with a clean finger after
a breastfeeding session will help protect the area from cracked skin
or chapping by spreading the natural sebum around the areola..
What is FAS? Does alcohol make it's presence known in mother's breast milk
Fetal Alcohol Syndrome is a condition that is
detrimental to the embryo/child, and is caused by the mother consuming
alcohol during her pregnancy. If a woman is breastfeeding, any drugs
may possibly pass to the child, through the mother's milk. Check with
your doctor on any medications that you may be taking while you are
How many days or weeks must you breastfeed a baby after it is born?
You do not HAVE TO breastfeed any child, if you have formula to provide
for it, but the longer you can breastfeed, the better it will be for
the child. Breast milk has been proven to be superior to any manufactured
formula. Leading specialists now recommend breastfeeding for at least
a whole year. Some mothers will breastfeed for several years after birth.
When women breastfeed, why do some breastfeed longer than others?
Some are more conscious of the advantages for the mother and the child,
some have time off from work to do it, some have a better support system
at home (and sometimes work). Sometimes the baby does not want to breastfeed
as long as others. Some breastfeed for five years or more.
How long should you breastfeed a child?
It would be great if every child could be breastfed at the very least
for the first 3 days. Experts would suggest that at least first few
months would be a minimum. Doctors are now recommending a minimum of
a full year, as long as you can or as long as the child is interested.
How long can a woman breastfeed?
Some women lactate for maybe twenty years. They have been referred
to as "wet nurses", and went from family to family, usually living in
with the family and taking care of the child until it stopped taking
breast milk. Because the woman would stop lactating if she did not breastfeed,
she would move on at that time to another family that required someone
to breastfeed their child.
What is Lactation?
Lactation is the proper or medical term for producing milk from the