How were your breasts postpartum?

(March 12, 2010)

Many pregnant women experience all kinds of changes to their breasts during the course of their pregnancy and even the days and the weeks that follow the birth of their child. For those mothers who are breast feeding the changes to their breasts will be very noticeable especially in the first few months once the milk supply has started. Some of the very normal changes that most women notice are in the first two or three days post the birth of the child the breasts secrete milk that is the first milk and is called colostrums. It is rich in antibodies and is yellowish in color. Post these days the milk will then ‘come in’. This causes the breasts of the nursing mother to become hard and get full with the milk, giving the feeling of engorgement. The best remedy for any pain from the engorgement is to start nursing the child thus releasing the pent up flow. The more frequent the nursing the breasts will feel. While nursing, check for any lumps that persist below the surface of the breast. Always get these lumps checked out if they last for an unusual period. Otherwise some lumps can be massaged out, or by applying some heat or even changing the position the baby is being fed in.

Once the mother’s milk supply has been established the breasts will become somewhat smaller and softer. This occurs around the sixth or the eight week. Even post the baby being weaned, the mother may be able to express some amount of milk for some months later. For those women who are not breastfeeding they are more than likely to feel the initial changes that occur to their breasts. Some women may be given some kind of medications to aid in the suppression of the milk supply but may still be able to produce some amount of milk. Expressing of milk should be avoided as it will only lead to more milk being produced. When the infant is not being nursed then the milk quantum automatically starts to go down. It works on the demand and supply principle. Ice packs can help reduce any pain that might accompany the ensuing engorgement. The engorgement will automatically reduce once the nursing is stopped. All the changes that occur to the breast post delivery are normal and to be expected in varying degrees. These symptoms can always be checked back with the doctor.

Submitted by P T on March 12, 2010 at 12:43

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