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The Mystery of D-MER: What Can Hormonal Research Tell Us About Dysphoric Milk-Ejection Reflex?

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The hormones that support breastfeeding also help mothers tolerate, or even enjoy it. But what happens when the hormones of breastfeeding turn against mothers? What if these very hormones make breastfeeding intolerable by biological mistake? That appears to be the case with D-MER. D-MER refers to Dysphoric Milk-Ejection Reflex, where mothers experience dysphoria during milk ejection. D-MER can range from mild to severe. It is a burst of negative emotions in the first few minutes of breastfeeding. In some cases, D-MER is so severe that mothers feel forced to wean. In this article, we examine the phenomenon of D-MER in the light of hormonal research, offer some hypotheses on the causes of D-MER, and suggest possible strategies mothers can use to help them cope.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 February 2018

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