You asked

When does breast milk form?

Once you become pregnant, your body begins the preparations required to breastfeed. A woman’s breast is filled with milk producing glands. There are also tubes that go from the breast lobes to the nipple. Before pregnancy, these tubes are mostly just fat and tissue and the glands are inactive.  It is the pregnancy hormones that kick start the breastmilk production process.

Two of the body’s natural hormones, prolactin and oxytocin, play a vital role in nursing. Prolactin is used to motivate the cells to being milk production. This hormone is released slowly during pregnancy and increases during nursing. The longer a baby feeds, the more prolactin is released. Oxytocin then causes the breast cells to contract, assisting the milk in eject. This is called the letdown reflex.

These hormones begin circulation as soon as a mother becomes pregnant. By the second trimester, your body may begin secreting some of its first milk, colostrum. This is when the breasts are fully capable of producing milk.  However, this secretion will be minor until childbirth when the colostrum begins to letdown in earnest.

Occasionally, milk production can occur outside of pregnancy but this is generally because of a hormone imbalance, a pituitary tumor, or the regular stimulation of your nipples.
 
baby-names

More questions

Amniocentesis is a test which you can have between weeks 15 and 18 of your pregnancy. Amniotic fluid is extracted from your uterus and this fluid is tested for chromosomal abnormalities. Such tests will show...
You may not be ready to tell people that you’re pregnant just yet but it can sometimes be a difficult thing to hide. Your expanding body is the first give away but your change in lifestyle might also have...
Firstly, it’s important to remember that you are meant to gain weight while pregnant. Your body is doing this to keep your baby healthy and give baby the best start in life possible, so don’t worry...
Staying hydrated is essential when carrying a baby
 Ultrasounds have become the norm for all pregnant women but what exactly goes on?
A CVS is a very accurate early antenatal test that detects chromosomal abnormalities. With this diagnostic test, you will have complete certainty whether or not your baby has got a particular condition. 
 Creating your baby's nursery can be exciting, emotional and.....eco-friendly. 
A spot on your baby’s heart is an abnormal variant. Variants are simply variations in how a baby develops. Normal variants are very common and nothing to worry. Abnormal variants may not mean anything but...
Men can can often be worried about sex while their partner is pregnant
Updating your will (or putting one together) is a necessity when you have a baby. While nobody wants to think about their death, as a parent it is essential that you make a plan in case someday you are not...

Latest

Trending

Hello Mama!
Help us help you by allowing us and our partners to remember your device as having browsed MummyPages and serve you better content and ads

We're on a mission to help our mums and their families thrive by informing, connecting and entertaining.

Join us in our mission by consenting to the use of cookies and IP address recognition by us and our partners to serve you content (including ads) best suited to your interests, both here and around the web.

We promise never to share any other information that may be deemed personal unless you explicitly tell us it's ok.

If you want more info, see our privacy policy.