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Sore Breasts in Early Pregnancy

There are many symptoms of pregnancy and one of the early signs of pregnancy includes swollen and tender breasts. Other symptoms are darkening of the part called aerola, and swelling in the glands encircling the nipples. The woman may feel soreness and enlargement in a week after conception and sometimes, the breasts cause pain on touching or when the clothes touch it. After the first trimester, soreness may reduce but it may appear at various stages of pregnancy.

Cause for soreness in first half of pregnancy: In the first trimester, especially during the third month the breasts produce colostrums, which is the milk given to the newborn. It can cause soreness.

Cause for soreness in the second half of pregnancy: In the second half of pregnancy, you may see bumps, which are oil producing glands also known as Montgomery's tubercles, which can cause the condition. There are changes in the structure of the breasts, which can cause tenderness. During the second half, women may have leakage of yellowish white watery fluid from breasts that is the milk.

Symptoms of soreness in second half

1. Itchy and scaly skin around, which may develop into stretch marks and this, is more commonly seen during the last trimester.
2. Enlargement of nipples
3. Heaviness
4. Itchiness
5. Darkening of nipples
6. Pigmentation around the nipples, which can get big and dark.
7. Bumps on the aerolas.

Cause of soreness

The body prepares to support the growth of the fetus by producing hormones such as estrogens and progesterone. Tenderness is also common in women during the start of the monthly cycle. Female breasts are made up of fat, blood, milk and tissues, and its purpose is to provide feed to newborn babies. The size increases during this stage as the body prepares to support the growth of the fetus. The fat layer thickens and extra layers of milk glands and blood vessels are formed. These changes can be more prominently visible in women, who have their first pregnancy. The cup size increases during the three trimesters and excess blood starts flowing in the glands.

Other causes of soreness: Soreness can indicate infection or hormonal imbalance caused by change in the use of birth control pill i.e. starting or stopping the use of birth control pill. Women who are not pregnant may experience soreness every month before the start of menstruation.

Tips to reduce pain and soreness

1. Wear cotton innerwear and bra should fit the changed cup size.

2. A highly supportive bra is needed when you exercise or go out.

3. You can use maternity products and specially designed bra for night time to prevent restriction.

4. Bra having a large cup size can be bought and avoid the use of bra that can cause restriction of blood flow.

5. To reduce the pain, you can apply ice cubes wrapped in cotton clothes to the nipples or apply cool facecloth to reduce itchiness.

6. Warm bath is helpful in reducing pain and swelling.

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