Breast changes during pregnancy
Alberta’s Calgary Breastfeeding Center’s director and lactation consultant Maureen Fjeld explains that the hormones of early pregnancy cause changes in the breast tissue. In fact, a common sign of pregnancy is an increase in breast size. Additionally, the areolae and nipples may appear and feel darker, and the nipples and breasts may feel tender. ” (For many women this darkening fades after pregnancy. ).
When I got out of the shower at six months pregnant with my son, I was shocked to see a yellow, gooey substance there. This is colostrum, the nutrient-rich milk that newborns drink in the first 24 to 36 hours after birth, according to Fjeld. She claims that colostrum can be detected by pregnant women at any time. Both leaking and not leaking colostrum are acceptable, according to Fjeld. The production of milk after the baby is born is unaffected by this. ”.
Speaking of weight gain, while it’s not necessary for those extra pounds to be permanent, many women do find them to be.
A 1996 study in the journal Ultrasound in Obstetrics & Gynecology (opens in new tab) found that premenopausal women who had children had slightly larger uteruses than women who had never given birth, even after this postpartum period had passed. However, its perhaps inaccurate to call it permanent, just long-lasting, as the uterus will then shrink to an even smaller size after menopause.
One in 4 women will hang onto 11 lbs. (5 kg) or more a year after giving birth, according to a prior Live Science report. An average woman will be 2 years old after giving birth. 5 to 5 lbs. According to Kathleen Rasmussen, a professor of maternal and child nutrition at Cornell University, the woman was between 1 and 2 kilograms (1 to 2 pounds) heavier after giving birth. Although it’s not a significant gain, this number can be made more significant by adding four or five babies.
Here’s a fact that might cheer you up even though your breasts may be losing the battle against gravity: breastfeeding may reduce your lifetime risk of developing breast cancer. According to a 2002 review published in The Lancet (opens in new tab), a woman’s relative risk of breast cancer decreases by 4% for every 12 months she breastfeeds a child.
Pregnancy comes with all kinds of skin changes. For instance, the linea nigra, which means “black line” in Latin, is a dark, vertical line that appears during pregnancy and runs from the belly to the area of pubic hair. The Journal of the National Medical Association (opens in new tab) speculates that this change may be related to rising levels of sex hormones.
Breast changes immediately after pregnancy
The ideal first food for a newborn baby is colostrum, which is low in volume to avoid taxing the kidneys of the infant but high in protein, calories, vitamins, and minerals. It meets all of the infant’s needs until the arrival of mother’s milk. But there are other benefits as well. Fjeld says that colostrum’s normal bacteria “help the baby digest the milk as it increases,” and that it “provides high doses of antibodies which protect the baby, who is coming from the sterile environment of the uterus into the world.” ”.
According to Fjeld, “as soon as the placenta is removed from the uterus, hormone levels spike, causing the body to start producing more milk.” Colostrum will have changed by the third or fourth day after birth to more mature milk, which may appear bluish white and be more watery than colostrum.