Women's Health: Postpartum Community
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Avatar universal

Stupid question about breast milk.

Is it true that you do not produce breast milk until AFTER the baby is born?  I am already producing the yellow stuff, I can see it every now and then, and it comes out if I put pressure on my breasts, because I masage them every so often.. they hurt like heck!  Is masaging bad?

So, my dumb question is ... Is it true that you do not produce breast milk until after the baby is born?  And.  Will haveing a C-Section make the milk production slower than having the baby vaginally.  Does having vaginal birth signal the milk to produce.  I know this is silly, but some of the stuff I have read is confusing.  

I have often wondered why women do not pump before the baby is born IF you are already producing milk.
11 Responses
Avatar universal
You do not produce milk until after birth. A woman who has a c-section will do the same as a woman who delivers vaginally in regards to milk production. It takes about 2-3 days after birth for milk to come in.
Avatar universal
DO NOT MASSAGE your breasts.........it can bring on labor. Your milk won't come in until after the baby is born.
Avatar universal
Really!?!?  I thought you produced milk right away.  That stinks!  So, why do they have lactation nurses at the hospital?  Around my parts they only keep you in the hospital for about a day and a half after delivery.. if you deliver vaginally that is.
Avatar universal
OK, I will stop doing that then!  They feel so itchy and achey and I've heard it only gets worse.
Avatar universal
Right after birth you will have what is called colostrum (the yellowish substance you described). This is what the baby will feed off of until your milk comes in.
Avatar universal

I am 28w1d and getting nervous.  Time has flown!
Avatar universal
a lactation nurse/consultant is there to help teach you and your baby how to nurse. unfortuntaly its not always an easy thing to do i strongly suggest getting all the help you can in that dept.  they need the colostrum in the first few days, so its very important to really try to breastfeed right away.  
177465 tn?1288242063
The lactation consultant is there because the baby has to eat. Even it it's just the colostrum coming out. Colostrum is very very nutritious for newborns. A teaspoon of that is enough for one feeding for a newborn baby! The consultant will teach you how to hold the baby and will hellp the baby get latched on. I highly suggest utilizing her services!!! Breastfeeding is difficult in the beginning, but well worth it!!
208686 tn?1293034103
You start producing milk after.... your body recognizes that you don't have a placenta in there anymore.
164559 tn?1233711618
Lactation consultants are invaluable.  The reason you do not have milk right away is that the colostrom is providing vital antibodies to help your baby adjust to the world.  
Avatar universal
u can leak colostrum while pregnant, but its not enough to feed a child or pump. Its liek the previous posters say, ur body doesnt produce milk until after birth when it recognizes the placenta is gone, its the same for c-section women, but it can take a day or two maybe more to come down. some women leak during pregnancy but not a great amount. the massaging can bring on labour but that only usually works late in the third trimester. I didnt leak with any of my pregnancies but i know frends who did. Also, just to a heads up, the more u breast feed the more milk you produce. breast milk does not have a particular time to dry up, the longer u nurse, the longer u will produce milk. it can take awhile to dry up as well after u have stopped nursing. Nursing can also delay or cease ur periods as well, but this doesnt mean breast feeding can protect u from pregnancy. I didnt get my period until i completely stopped nursing and i nursed my first son for 2 1/2 years! and i still have milk...am 35 weeks preggo. this queston is often asked so i thought i would throw it in! good luck and congrats.
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