Oxytocin is a natural hormone the body produces known as the hormone of love. This hormone is released in large quantities during labor from the brain into the bloodstream.  Oxytocin has many functions like protecting the baby’s brain during birth, causes uterine contractions, gives a feeling on calmness and aids in breastfeeding. Stimulating your nipples can cause you to start labor or increase contractions of the uterus.  Once the Oxytocin is released it causes the uterus to contract, which helps to dilate the cervix, delivery of the baby and placenta expulsion.  Skin to skin contact with your baby after birth helps regulate the Oxytocin levels, keep the baby warm and aids in breastfeeding.  Birth interventions like induction with Pitocin can interfere with the natural way that your body produces and uses Oxytocin.

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