When does milk come in? Question from new mom - Mothering Forums

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Old 11-07-2006, 01:15 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi all!

My hubby and I are having our first child in February. I am almost 7 months now and was wondering- when does breast milk start coming in? For the most part my breasts are the same except for darker aeroles and nipples. Does milk form after the baby is born? Was just wondering what everyone's experience was... a little part of me is worried I might not make milk at all because I just dont see any changes.

Thanks everyone!
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Old 11-07-2006, 01:28 AM
 
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You are probably making colostrum now. That's the first thing your baby will eat. You're baby will only get a little bit of that. Then a few days(give or take) after birth your breasts will start making milk. Your baby only needs colostrum until your milk comes in.
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Old 11-07-2006, 01:32 AM
 
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I didnt make the white milk untill a week after birth, I think. give or take a few days maybe. The colostrum is yellow and from what I can remember thicker than the milk. oh, and the colostrum leaked out a very lil bit 2 weeks before my due date.
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Old 11-07-2006, 01:40 AM
 
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first of all...don't worry!! mamas & babies have been bfing for a loooong time. your body knows what it's doing.
my milk came in my dd's 3rd day. congrats & good for you for learning ahead of time. stick around for some good info!!

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Old 11-07-2006, 03:51 AM
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First baby for me, colostrum showed up in small amounts in the 7th month sometime, milk came in 2-3 days post-partum.
(edit: i'm going on when I felt engorged for the first time - I wasn't pumping, just nursing, and it's kind of hard to tell what is coming out when it is all immediately swallowed.)
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Old 11-07-2006, 03:57 AM
 
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this is one of the areas i see new moms getting crappy advice from nurses and drs. all the time.

i cant remember when i started leaking during preg. but my milk came in on day 3. i just watched a horrible show today that had parents giving the baby formula b/c the mothers milk hadnt come in. : moms milk wont come in for anywhere from 2 to 6 or even 7 days (i have heard of it taking that long). in the meantime, what you are producing will be exactly what baby needs, exactly. there wont be a reason to supplement so please dont let them convince you otherwise.

i dont know if you have any books, but i highly recommend reading a few breastfeeding books..and keeping some on hand for problems you may encounter.

we are on our 11th month and still about 95% breastfed...but it wasnt always easy. try to prepare yourself by reading about potential problems before the baby is born..that will make it much easier to deal with when handling a newborn.

good luck!
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Old 11-07-2006, 01:23 PM
 
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I just wanted to add that I never had any milk or colostrum leak before either of my kids was born, but had no problems with the milk coming in after.

I've heard, anecdotally, that being induced early will often lead to a time-lag for the milk coming in, which sort of makes sense--your body wasn't quite ready to go into labor, so it has to hurry to catch up to start making milk. But even the one person I know who was probably induced 3 weeks before when the baby would have come on its own (long pregnancies run in her family, and her doc was worried about her blood pressure), her milk came in, it just took a while (I think about a week, like a previous poster said).

And as aisraeltax said, finding some good information sources, whether books, websites or really knowledgeable people, is a great comfort when you're not sure if things are "normal" or not.
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Old 11-07-2006, 01:23 PM
 
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And the more you nurse the faster your milk will come in, so nurse as much as your baby wants.
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Old 11-07-2006, 01:54 PM
 
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It took two days for my milk to come in both times. I tried to nurse as often as I could so they could get lots of colostrum. It does a baby body good.
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Old 11-07-2006, 02:01 PM
 
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Don't worry--you'll be able to make milk just fine. I also had no breast changes during pregnancy (other than darker nipples/areolas)--it has no bearing on your ability to make milk! My milk came in on day 3; plan on spending the day your milk comes in nursing all day with no visitors/distractions. Those early days of nursing are so important for establishing a good supply.

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Old 11-07-2006, 03:27 PM
 
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Nothing came out of my boobs during pregnancy at all, even doing nipple stim at the end. My milk came in just fine about 2 days pp.
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Old 11-07-2006, 08:11 PM
 
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My milk came in day 5. Clear fluid came out a little while preg.

I just want to say that make sure you have good support from your ped and are very knowledgeable about bfing before your baby is born. I thought I knew enough and thought everything would be fine. We had some latching problems for the first week or so, and our lactation consultant told us to supplement with formula because I had low-supply and she was too weak to suck....but my milk hadn't even come in yet, and she could suck our fingers HARD like it was nobody's business! She also lost 12% body weight and both my ped and my mw never suggested formula. She's doing great now and has never had formula. Be very careful who you listen to. Even lactation consultants can give very bad advice! Trust your instincts.
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Old 11-07-2006, 10:13 PM
 
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I have a 4 month old and never felt any change in my breasts before the baby was born. I never felt any engorgement or anything, I was worried same as you and despite having ended up csection (a failed vbac)... I made sure to go to the nursery every 2 hrs to latch the baby (no rooming in in that hospital... crazy). The nurses and pediatricians insisted on giving my baby formula or glucose water but I refused and was confident that the milk would come in eventually. After 2 1/2 days of latching her on every 2 hrs (colustrum) there was one night that I tried to relax after arguing with the pediatrician about my wanting to exclusively breastfeed (she was pushing the formula and had given my baby 2oz of sugar water without my permission)... and after meditating and visualizing my baby... I felt the milk come in and that engorgement I felt was so sweet...

The doctors were so paranoid about my baby ending up in NICU because she was on the low end of the scale and hadn't urinated for some long hrs. She was born 5 lbs 11oz, went down to 5 lbs 1 oz the first days in the hospital, went home at 5 lbs 7 oz and one week later, after being home EBF she weighed 7 lbs.

I guess the point of all this is to let you know that you WILL be able to breastfeed and to warn you of doctors and nurses who don't trust nature enough to let things happen naturally. My advice: whether you have a natural childbirth or not... make sure you latch your baby on every 2 hrs as soon as you are able to... trust your body, yourself and visualize that you will have plenty of milk for your baby. Try not to be tempted into the formula thing... you'll see... after a few weeks of breastfeeding it will become second nature and you will be very proud.

:::
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Old 11-07-2006, 10:27 PM
 
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I had no colostrum before my first was born, and my milk came in about 3-4 days later (I had what seemed like a small amount of colostrum after the birth.) I'm glad the LC explained (in a BFing class I took prenatally) that babies come with a "sack lunch" - they don't need us to provide them with "food" (ie breastmilk or formula) right away. They just need that precious colostrum at the beginning. I tried pumping after my first was born and was freaking that it only seemed like a trace amount of colostrum was present. Now I know that pumping is a poor indicator of supply and I trust biology that my body gives a newborn babe exactly what it needs. (Just think of the cavepeople's babies!! ) With my second, I think my milk came in a bit sooner and I had colostrum before the birth, but I nursed DS until I was about 22 weeks pg

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Old 11-07-2006, 10:36 PM
 
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I also never leaked before giving birth. I only knew that the colostrum was there (around 7 or 8 mos?) because I purposefully expressed a drop or two to see if it was there.

I have read that some women are not able to express colostrum prior to giving birth, so if you try and you don't see any, don't worry about it, it's still there. Babies are the best way to extract anything from your breast.

My milk (the white stuff) came in around 3-4 days after giving birth each time.

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Old 11-08-2006, 12:17 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maminatural View Post
I
My advice: whether you have a natural childbirth or not... make sure you latch your baby on every 2 hrs as soon as you are able to...
VERY important! Babies are alert and ready to nurse for the first hour or so after birth, then they get tired and want to sleep for about 4-6 hours. IMMEDIATELY after birth is the perfect time to get your baby to the breast so he/she can focus on your face and suckle. Don't make him/her wait to know that you will provide them with nourishment & comfort. Also, this early suckling is critical to helping you birth the placenta, stop the blood flow and get your uterus back to its normal size.

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Old 11-08-2006, 12:29 PM
 
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I gave birth on a Thursday and had milk on Sunday.

Amanda - wife to DH Kellyjog.gif, Mummers to Trentreading.gif born 03/03/05 Bridgetdust.gif born 08/08/07 and a IT'S A BOY! Kennedy babyboy.gifborn 02/20/11!
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Old 11-08-2006, 12:36 PM
 
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I was real worried about it so I started pumping with after DD nursed right after birth. It was a good thing I did too, b/c she was low-blood sugar so she needed to be finger-fed right away. By doing that and drinking Mother'sMilk Tea my milk was in by that night! My LC was really impressed with me. I was impressed with myself. I had such horrid problems the first time around : , but with a great LC I was able to make sure I had good milk production and a great start for babe and I.

If you really are concerned and want to prepare well, I would ask around and find the name of a great LC that will come to your house and help prepare you thoroughly for the birth and nursing. SHe should also come to where ever you bitrth to help you get a great start. I am a worry wart b/c of my nursing problems, but some moms never need any of this stuff, they just do it all by themselves with help from other moms, LLL, and this board!
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Old 11-08-2006, 01:12 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NaomiLorelie View Post
And the more you nurse the faster your milk will come in, so nurse as much as your baby wants.
YES! YES!

mom to sam arlo (5), olive loretta (3)....and twin girls Annie and Ramona Jean, born 3/10.

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Old 11-08-2006, 06:22 PM
 
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My milk came in on day 4. This is my first. We had latch problems, so definately make sure you have access to a lactation consultant or LLL leader to help you if you do. My breasts grew two bra sizes during pregnancy, but I did not leak anything until day 4...when my milk came in it REALLY came in!
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Old 11-08-2006, 07:58 PM
 
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My milk cam in on day 3. I remember squeezing some colostrum out a few weeks before birth. I tried to because I noticed little yellow stains on my bra/shirt and was very excited my body was getting ready to do its job.
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Old 11-08-2006, 08:12 PM
 
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My milk didnt even start to come in for five whole days. This isn't typical though I had a really stressful/traumatic C section and I am sure the stress had a HUGE impact on my milk supply (plus my daughter was in the NICU for a few days and I didnt get to nurse her until she was 2 days old. It finally fully came in when she was 6 weeks old.
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Old 11-08-2006, 09:17 PM
 
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I never leaked or anything before birth. My breast changes were like yours - just aereola size and color.

My baby was fine - colustrum came in just like it should, and my milk followed some 6 days later. It took awhile, but everything was fine. Baby was OK!
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Old 11-08-2006, 09:47 PM
 
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I just wanted to clarify someone's ealier advice...I'm not criticizing, because it was good advice, but I just thought I'd add something so any other newbies won't get confused...

It was the 'make sure to latch your baby every 2 hours' part. Yes, this is good...as some babies get very sleepy after birth and mom won't think to wake baby to latch. BUT...if your baby shows signs of wanting to nurse sooner and more often than 2 hours then by all means, nurse! I had one nurse at one of my hospital births telling me, in not so many words, that my baby was nursing too often. I just smiled, told her this was my third baby, and he was doing just fine. And kept letting him nurse. My last baby was born in a freestanding birth center with a midwife and he slept and nursed all night with me. As long as your nipples aren't getting overly sore (and they will get sore until they are used to the sucking) then nurse as much as baby wants, and if baby seems uninterested, try to get him to latch on at least every 2 hours. But other than that, watch your baby and not a clock, both for how often and how long he nurses.

Your body knows what to do. Trust it, no the antsy nurse with a bottle of formula/sugar water. You will do fine, you are so much farther ahead than some new moms because you are seeking answers early.
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Old 11-08-2006, 10:25 PM
 
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You're absolutely right Squeeky. I'm the one who suggested every 2 hrs but what I meant is basically to make sure she nursed as often as needed. My baby was one that would nurse (in the beginning) every 1 to 1 1/2 hrs easily. I had no problem with nursing on demand. I agree that you need to trust your body and have faith... something some hospital personnel lack.

:::
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Old 11-08-2006, 10:32 PM
 
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My milk came in 4 days after my son was born but I was making colostrum even before he was born...it was yellowish,oily and small amounts.
The baby only needs colostrum until the milk comes in...and when the milk comes in, it is very thin and watery looking. My breasts never got engorged either (it seems that engorgement is depicted a lot in movies and stuff but it didn't happen that way for me).
My little boy wanted to nurse very very frequently. Again, a common myth seems to be that newborns only need to nurse every 3 hours. Not true...it is important to nurse them on demand....as often as they want. The more you nurse, the faster the milk will come and the faster your baby will grow. The reason they have to nurse so much is that breastmilk is so highly digestible (perfect food)...much more easy and perfect for them to digest than formula. And their newborn tummies are only the size of a walnut so they empty fast.
You are going to do great! Your body knows what to do....everything from conceiving the baby, to growing the baby, to feeding the baby!
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Old 11-09-2006, 12:04 AM
 
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My nipples changed in color and size, but I never had ANY milk come out at all.

Then it took 5 days for the colostrum to change over to milk. And that's totally OK, a variation of NORMAL. Colostrum is amazing, amazing stuff, and it's VERY OK for a newborn to have "only" colostrum for a while. Even though I'd had him at a hospital (sniffle), I was kicked out at 42 hours. Which didn't feel lucky at the time, but WAS, because I had no one breathing down my neck. It was just me, DS, and DH, and we were all trusting ME.

So he had colostrum, then on the 5th day it started changing over to milk, and it was all GOOD.
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Old 11-09-2006, 12:50 AM
 
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Just adding my thoughts - I leaked from week 20 in my pregnancy but none of my friends ever did (how lucky I am : - Tee hee!)... I also had a fairly traumatic birth experience (although baby seemed to sail through it! ) - had a long labor and then emergency c-section (I was also induced because of pre-eclampsia)... anyway, not that any of that will happen to you - but even with all those obstacles my milk came in on day 4 after the birth. Baby was put to the breast immediately after birth (or as close to) by my request and although she had little or no interest (they apparently go through transition for 24-48 hours which means I think that they are just basically absorbing what just happened to them and are resting before everything in this wonderful world kicks in! )... Hopefully you will have a good lactation consultant/nurses and everything will go okay - for the record I was expecting my breasts/nipples to change too and they never looked any different to me either - Don't fret - your body was made to do this so it will be fine - just relax and enjoy the experience!!! Good luck and God Bless!
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Old 11-09-2006, 04:31 AM
 
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My milk didn't start flowing until day 7 after giving birth. My babe lost a pound, 12% of her body weight so they were freakin out. Luckily I had a few friends who donated milk in the begining so I didn't have to give her formula like the doctors were all strongly suggesting...
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Old 11-09-2006, 04:05 PM
 
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I had a planned c-section w/ my first and my milk came in the next day. I had to pump (bad latch) here and there and my colostrum was a beautiful yellow colour, it looked yummy actually (but I didn't try it, maybe next time).

With my 2nd, also a planned c-section, my milk came in on the 2nd day. That felt like a long time, babe was nursing and nursing and I'm sure there was colostrum there, but he was pretty glad to get something more I think, lol.

Hats off to mommy's who wait longer than a couple of days! I can't imagine the pressure from hospital staff to start using formula!

Oh yeah - the only breast changes I had while pg were a little larger and some soreness early in pg. I could squeeze out some colostrum but definitely no leaking. Don't worry - your breasts will know what to do!

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