Breast Pain in Pregnancy

During pregnancy, your body goes through a myriad of changes, that are both physical and mental. And it is safe to say that the physical changes are more noticeable. And one of the most apparent changes takes place in your breasts.

picBreast Pain in Pregnancy

Due to the heightened secretion of hormones, estrogen, and progesterone, your breasts turn tender and well, quite painful and sore (ouch!)

Now in this article, we’ll talk about breast pain! Why does it occur? How is it different from the breast pain you experience during PMS (Premenstrual Syndrome)? Can it be the first sign of pregnancy? And other related queries.

What happens to your breasts during pregnancy?

Breast pain comes in various ways and forms.

It can sometimes be limited to only one breast and the other times on both. The pain may be concentrated on a single spot on your breast, or sometimes it is all over. You might experience a sharp, shooting pain that moves outward towards the armpit.

To-be-moms frequently depict it as a more severe version of the premenstrual symptom. The soreness and pain may spread to your nipples and areola too. 

During the early weeks, your breasts will have a dull ache, feel swollen and heavy. The nipples, too, are quite sensitive and tender that causes a lot of discomfort and pain even with the slightest of touch. The nipples might also have a tingling sensation and will be more protruding. In most women, the areola (the dark area around the nipple) becomes darker, sometimes spotted, and bigger. 

This is something that will progress as the months' pass. The areola will also sport Montgomery tubercles, sweat glands that look like little goosebumps, that supply lubrication to the area. Additionally, a complex highway of blue veins will be visible just below the skin's surface. This helps carry nutrients and fluids to the baby when it feeds.

Now that we know what happens, let’s understand

Why it happens

During pregnancy, your breasts don’t just start hurting, they even grow in size. This is because they’re building up the fat content. Your breasts will be the only source of your baby’s food and nutrition immediately after child-birth. This is just your body preparing you for it.

Also, an increase in the levels of estrogen and progesterone, along with higher overall blood flow to the area, is one of the main reasons behind the soreness and pain. 

How is it different from PMS?

During PMS, breast swelling and tenderness occur and are usually heightened right before your period. Ladies in their childbearing years will, in general, have comparatively acute indications. Your breasts, during the period, feel particularly dense and heavy with dull aches.

The pain generally improves during your period or just after, as your progesterone levels decline. 

During the early weeks of pregnancy, your breasts may feel sore, sensitive, and tender to the touch. 

Truth be told, it is extremely difficult to determine from early side effects alone if a lady is pregnant or having symptoms identified with her upcoming period. This is because the symptoms are not very unique.

However, there is one symptom that is only relevant to pregnancy and that is- darkening of the nipple and the surrounding area (areola). This actually can occur as early as a week or two after conception or during later part of the pregnancy. 

Is breast pain an early sign of pregnancy?

Breast pain can be an early sign of pregnancy, even the first. But it is in no way a definitive sign of pregnancy. As it is mentioned above, there are a few signs that can help you distinguish whether it is PMS or pregnancy.

If you’re experiencing breast pain and your period is late, it definitely increases the chances of you being pregnant. However, it will be best if you resort to taking a home pregnancy test before making assumptions and starting to make any preparations. 

Breast pain usually occurs during the beginning and the conclusion of your term. So, rest assured. You don’t have to worry about the ache in your bra for nine months straight.

Do whatever you need to lessen the pain and discomfort. Wear baggy clothes, go on a bra-shopping spree, let your partner know about the ordeal. Taking Vitamin E helps with the pain, but make sure to consult your doctor before consuming anything.

Happy and healthy pregnancy!

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