Does Breastfeeding Make Your Breast Bigger Or Smaller?
When pregnant, you might notice that your breasts enlarge to a cup size or more — that’s in preparation for feeding your baby. Similarly, your nipples can darken and develop striae, or lines, which are caused by the increased levels of estrogen and progesterone.
Your nipples and areolas typically return to their pre-pregnancy shape after you finish breastfeeding, says Dr. Nguyen. Depending on your sensitivity, however, they may continue to be sore for a while after you wean your baby, she adds.
If you’re noticing a difference in your breasts after you’ve stopped nursing, it’s important to see a health care practitioner. They can check for mastitis, which is an infection that can cause painful red breasts and fever. They can also assess if you have thrush, a yeast infection that can be treated with antifungal medication.
It’s normal to feel a little bit heavier after you stop breastfeeding, but this isn’t something to be concerned about. Your body will eventually get used to the new feeding routine, and it will start producing more milk, as long as you’re doing everything right.
Your nipples may be sore or painful after you wean your baby, but this is usually temporary. If they crack or break, you might have a mild yeast infection, called thrush, which can be treated with an antifungal cream.
A plugged milk duct is another common problem, but it’s not dangerous for either you or your baby, so don’t panic if this happens. If it’s causing your nipples to become itchy or painful, you can try applying a nipple shield.
Some women are able to breastfeed after surgery, but it’s best to speak to your doctor or midwife about it. They can tell you what’s involved and whether it’s the right decision for you and your baby.
It’s not unusual to notice tangles of veins cupping your breast, but this is normal as well. That’s because blood volume increases during pregnancy, which helps boost circulation to your breasts and nipples.
The appearance of veins may be more pronounced during the early weeks of pregnancy. But these tangles will often go away after you wean your baby.
Your nipples should also return to their pre-pregnancy shape once you wean your baby, says Dr. Nguyen, adding that your nipples might increase in size and can darken with age.
As you’re breastfeeding, your breasts and nipples may not have the elasticity they had before, leading to sagging or droopy boobs. This doesn’t happen in every woman, but if it does occur, you can firm up your breasts with exercises and a healthy eating plan, suggests Ross.
It’s true that your breasts will likely change in size and shape, but this isn’t related to how much you nurse, as the mammary glands are the same for all women. That said, if you have a genetic tendency to saggy breasts, you’ll likely have more trouble with it after giving birth.
If you’re looking to firm up your breasts after your baby is born, try using a firming serum like Mustela’s Bust Firming Serum. This will help prevent your nipples and areolas from sagging.