Nausea, fatigue, throwing up and a very acute sense of smell are some of the first and well-known symptoms of pregnancy. However, those who are in tune with their bodies will tell you that breast tenderness is the first alarm that you might be pregnant. This is because unlike other symptoms, breast tenderness appears 8 to 10 days after conception.
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What Causes Breast Growth in Pregnancy
From the day a woman’s body realizes that there is a baby coming, the body’s blood volume begins to increase in order to meet the developmental needs of the fetus. This increase causes the breast veins to enlarge and become more visible, and this feels like the breasts want to explode which is what women call tenderness or sensitivity.
Breast growth during pregnancy really becomes real towards the end of the first trimester when the placenta fully releases human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG), a hormone that starts off estrogen and progesterone. These hormones are released to start preparing the milk glands for milk production when the baby comes. As the milk glands enlarge, your breasts will become bigger by the day with some going a couple of sizes higher.
How to Manage Breast Growth
Apart from the growth, the breasts all become overly sensitive, tight, dry and sometimes painful. Here are some things you can do to manage these side effects;
- Get fitted for the right bra size again to accommodate and support the new size and weight of breasts.
- Apply moisturizer on your breasts and the nipples twice a day to reduce drying and prevent stretch marks
- Massage the breasts gently to help the expanded milk glands and skin relax
Will my breasts ever go back to normal? This is a question most women ask when they see their breasts grow bigger and bigger each day. Fortunately, the answer is yes. A few months after you finish breastfeeding, your breasts should go back to normal especially if you took good care of them during pregnancy and breastfeeding period.