Access info on COVID tests, vaccines, visitor policy, hospitalization data, and FAQs.
Search by keyword or browse our list of services.
Find a provider by specialty, location, or availability.
See current studies testing new drugs, devices, and equipment to find better ways to treat and help patients.
For life-threatening emergencies, call 911 without delay.
Search by specialty and location.
Receive the highest level of care from the region's leading providers.
Find a lab or imaging facility close to you.
Find an outpatient infusion center.
Visit us to pay bills, ask billing questions, or request billing records.
Oxytocin is a hormone released from the pituitary gland in the brain. During pregnancy, oxytocin causes labor contractions to begin. Oxytocin also is released when a woman's breasts are stimulated by suckling or pumping, causing milk to move from the ducts and out the tiny holes in the nipple (let-down reflex). In the first few days after delivery, oxytocin also causes uterine contractions that help shrink the uterus back to its prepregnancy size.
After breastfeeding is established, your body may release oxytocin when you hear a baby cry, think of your baby, or have sexual intercourse. When this occurs, your breasts may leak milk whether or not you are actively breastfeeding or pumping.
Your body may not release oxytocin when you are anxious, embarrassed, or distracted. You may need to breastfeed in a relaxing, quiet, familiar, private place for let-down to occur.
Current as of: June 16, 2021
Author: Healthwise Staff
Sarah Marshall MD - Family Medicine
Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine
Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
Kirtly Jones MD - Obstetrics and Gynecology
To learn more, visit Healthwise.org
© 1995- Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
You take care of others, so take care of yourself. Let us be your partner in health, whether you're recovering from an injury, checking in for your annual exam, or enjoying an online class.
Because when you take care of yourself, everyone around you benefits.