Breastfeeding After a Cesarean Birth

Supporting Breastfeeding

Mothers who have a cesarean-section often discover that a surgical birth also has an impact on breastfeeding.  If the mother has her c-section prior to going into labour, or has had labour induced, she will not produce the same cascade of hormones that a natural labour start creates. These hormones influence not only the birth process but also set up the conditions to produce a good supply of breastmilk. Medications given during labour and delivery can influence the baby’s alertness in the early days and intravenous fluids have been shown to increase breast engorgement. Some studies have suggested that women who have c-sections have delayed lactation. It is unclear whether the delay is due to the physical stress of a surgical birth or due to the delay in first feedings and fewer early feedings.

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The news isn’t all bad however. Other studies have shown evidence that mothers who have supportive…

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