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Is nipple stimulation actually helpful?

My midwife suggested I try nipple stimulation to get things moving along and to help me dilate. It sounds very unpleasant, especially since I'm going to breastfeed. I'm wondering if it is actually helpful in any way in regards to getting labor going and/or toughening nipples up to breastfeed. Experiences?? Also, how exactly do you do it? Just sit and play with your nipples for 15 minutes? That sounds awkward and I'm not really sure I want to give it a go if it doesn't really do much in the end. Thanks!

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Asked by Anonymous at 3:11 PM on Feb. 10, 2010 in Pregnancy

Answers (8)
  • I tried it
    all I got was wet spots on my shirt
    babies come when they are ready

    Answer by peanutsmommy1 at 3:18 PM on Feb. 10, 2010

  • It might work. It should feel good. Your SO could do it. It you have a breastpump you can use that. You can use lotion and massage and roll.

    You could even have an orgasm. Oxytocin is the hormone that is released during breastfeeding, birth, and orgasm. Some women some times feel orgasmic breastfeeding. There are women that describe the last part of birth as orgasmic.

    There is no reason to 'toughen up' nipples for breastfeeding. The only women that need to do anything before birth are those with flat or inverted nipples.


    Answer by Gailll at 3:20 PM on Feb. 10, 2010

  • ok so i tried that when i was about 38 weeks lol hoping to sped things along cuz i was already beginning to dilate. you dont just rub ur nipples like to turn yourself on, you actually have to squeeze them and roll them around in your fingers to get it to work at all. it will be unpleasant at first though lol. roll them for about 10 or 15 minutes, then stop and rest. within about 15 minutes i would feel a tightening in my pelvic area, like an irregular contraction...and then that was it. then you try again after 30 minutes. the only thing is it only gives like one contraction, so unless u are already contracting, it will not continue.

    Answer by secondtyme520 at 3:21 PM on Feb. 10, 2010

  • lol you know all of it is old wise tells and none of it realy works. i tried everything to go into labor and nothing worked. they say playing with your nipples, bummpy rides, sex, masterbation, and walking can help move things along but the truth is unless your body releases the hormone needed to get labor in gear nothing will work. i walked 2 miles day and nite for 4 days when on numrous rides had sex took warm baths and they still had to induce me. but if you want to give it a try.

    Answer by laura970 at 3:22 PM on Feb. 10, 2010

  • You can try it but if you body is not ready it will not do anything. Other then give you a wet spot on your shirt. Baby will come when baby is ready.

    Answer by Raeann11 at 3:24 PM on Feb. 10, 2010

  • I've read you have to sit and do it for a really long time for it to actually have an effect.
    I've never actually tried it though, just seems like it would be a time waster. :-P

    Answer by SabrinaLC at 3:37 PM on Feb. 10, 2010

  • Actually nipple stimulation is not an old wives tale. It's all about the release of hormones. The pleasure hormone oxytocin is realsed both during sex/sexual stimulation (playing with your nipples) and labor. If your body is clsoe to going into labor, causing yourself to release oxytocin could start labor, triggering the other hormones involved in labor.

    If you don't feel comfortable with nipple stimulation, perhaps you and your SO and share some intimate moments. GL

    Answer by FuzNet at 3:39 PM on Feb. 10, 2010

  • Stipple stimulation is NOT an old wives tale. It releases the same hormones yoru body will naturally release when you go into labor.

    I used a breastpump at 2 minutes on, 3 minutes off intervals for 20 minutes at a time. It did help me dilate more but didn't put me into full blown labor. It has put several of my friends into labor when they tried it at the advise of their HCP when they were over due.

    Answer by Anonymous at 4:07 PM on Feb. 10, 2010

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