Very often sucking difficulties may also result from a child not getting enough milk. This is usually because the reflex, which is essential to enable the milk to come out of the breasts, is temporarily inhibited. This is the ejection/let-down reflex. It does not merely release the milk but causes muscular contraction in the breast, which forces the milk out. This ejection reflex can be inhibited for a number of reasons. In a maternity ward, it may be because a mother is afraid or embarrassed by the unfamiliar environment or the presence of the strangers, or depressed or nervous about her motherhood or perhaps her future. The reflex is also inhibited if the mother worries too much about her milk, and lacks confidence in her ability to satisfy her infant.
Many common problems with breast-feeding result from inhibition of ejection reflex. This causes symptoms like: baby fussing at the breast, baby crying again only a short time after having been fed or the milk seems suddenly to have disappeared.
To make a diagnosis, see if you feel tense, prickling let down sensation beneath your nipples when the baby begins to suck. However, many successful nursing mothers do not feel these sensations in the early weeks of nursing and some large-breasted women never feel them at any time.
Your judgement of whether the reflex works properly or not may therefore have to be based on whether the baby seems to be getting milk, rather than on probing what you, the mother can feel. The ejection reflex is easily influenced by the mothers psychological state. Hence treatment must be psychological than physical.
How you can help yourself: