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Will breastfeeding help my uterus shrink to its pre-pregnancy size?

When you breastfeed your baby, one of the hormones that is released into your body is Oxytocin. Oxytocin causes “smooth” muscle to contract, such as the sacs of milk in your breasts. When your milk sacs are contracted, the milk shifts position to the front of the breast, where it is readily available for your baby. The contraction is something you will be familiar with when you are nursing, and can be described as a “letdown” reflex.
The uterus is also a smooth muscle, and it too is affected by the Oxytocin hormones in your body. With each feeding, your uterus contacts, due to the individual muscle cells responding to the hormones released. This enables you uterus to shrink more and more, eventually returning to its pre-pregnancy size. Oxytocin has another effect: It induces feelings of love in mothers towards their babies. This chemical aid to the natural bonding process is important, and is why Oxytocin is also referred to as “the love hormone.”

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