Updated: May 8
We know that bust shape and size will change as we go through life, from puberty all the way to menopause. It is no different for when you’re pregnant and when you’re going through postpartum. Busts are mostly made of glandular tissues (lobules and milk ducts), fat tissues, and connective tissues. Lobules are the small glands that produce milk. Milk ducts are the tiny tubes to transport the milk from the lobules to the nipple.
Pregnancy, rather than the act of breastfeeding, is the main cause of the changes in bust shape and size. During pregnancy, hormonal changes will cause the cause the “activation” of the lobules and milk in preparation of breastfeeding. The busts will be fully capable of producing milk around 6 months into the pregnancy although the milk won’t be released right after your little one is born, although slight leaking may occur.
After the birth of your little one, a small amount of colostrum, which is a thick yellow liquid also known as liquid gold, will be released. Colostrum is great in strengthening the immune system of your little one. Your bust will only be full and heavy of milk around 3 days postpartum. The fast swelling of the bust may be painful and uncomfortable for some. The swelling will go down when you breastfeed or pump out the milk. It will take a few days before your body adapts to the momentum of milk production, especially if you are a new mummy.
With this fullness and heaviness of the bust, the skin in this area will stretch to accommodate the change. This means that the skin around the bust area may have stretchmarks. The stretching of skin during this period may also cause the sagginess of the bust in the future. This will happen regardless of your decision to breastfeed or not.
Nipples, being part of the bust, will also change and will require more care and attention during this period. The difficulty level of trying to latch your little one may depend on the type of nipples that you have. After breastfeeding or pumping, it is important to ensure adequate time for your nipples to airdry. You may consider putting on nipple cream, rubbing breast milk or rubbing olive oil over your nipples before letting them airdry. This will prevent moisture from sticking around.
Sagginess will happen overtime as a natural way of life. It may happen earlier due to the stretching of the skin during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Be sure to wear a well-fitting and comfortable bra to support your busts to slow down this process.
Embrace the changes in your bust and be amazed by how amazing your bust and body is in adapting to changes.