The Source of Labor Pains and Breast Milk:
A Hormone Produced in the Brain
When the period of pregnancy is complete, the abrupt beginning of labor pains herald the start of a new life. A hormone called oxytocin initiates labor and sends the first indication of this impending event.
This hormone, released by the pituitary gland, has its effect in two main sites: on the muscles of the mother's uterus, and on the muscle cells that eject milk into the ducts of the breasts.
The increased contraction of the uterus is of utmost importance in ensuring that birth will take place safely for both mother and infant. This hormone facilitates the strong contractions of the muscles of the uterus—but does so only after nine months and ten days have passed since conception. Either earlier or later could put the baby's life in danger. When the right time comes, receptors in the uterus send signals to the brain. On receiving this signal the brain produces oxytocin, just the right molecule, and sends it to the target area—those receptors far away.
In addition to all this, oxytocin has another separate function, facilitating the nourishment of the baby just arrived to the world by secreting a supply of milk.
How do cells in a tiny part of the mother's brain decide to produce a hormone that makes childbirth easy for the womb to perform?
How can this hormone find its way through the whole circulatory system, to the exact cells where it is needed?
Who possesses the knowledge that the baby needs to develop and mature for nine months and ten days in the mother's womb, and begins the mechanism of labor at just the right point?
Does the oxytocin hormone itself consider the baby's need to be fed and set up a system that ensures the secretion of milk from the mother?
Oxytocin is just one hormone out of thousands in our body. Just like it, every other hormone helps organize bodily functions; makes critical decisions; sets about implementing them; communicates with other cells; stimulates the needed secretions; determines the necessary amounts, the timing and duration—carrying out this and many other complex processes without fault.
Very obviously, such a wondrously perfect planning does not come about by itself, or as a result of coincidence. The Planner, Creator and Controller of the entire conscious organization of these hormones, down to the tiniest detail, is God, the Possessor of infinite knowledge.
1. ADH and oxytocin hormones are released by the pituitary gland.
2. At the appropriate time, ADH and oxytocin are transported down axons of the pituitary for secretion into blood.
3. Pituitary gland
6. ADH affects the tubules in the kidneys. Oxytocin, on the other hand, affects the uterus and mammary glands.
7. The smooth muscles of the uterus
9. Mammary glands in the breasts
10. Oxytocin initiates the secretion of breast milk and contractions during labor.