Reclaim your boobs!

The forgotten casualty of pregnancy and breastfeeding…

 

Before I even peed on my pregnancy testing stick I knew I was about to be a mum because my boobs seemed to expand five sizes overnight – and were so sore even walking caused me to wince.

As the pregnancy developed they continued to inflate leaving me with what one “friend” called a “pregnancy trifecta” of two big boobs and a belly to match.

After birth, they turned into milk bombs, inflating even more as my milk came in and then they were gnawed and pawed as my newborn hungrily latched on to my nipples.

When my last bub finally decided to stop breastfeeding (well, I ended up weaning him at 18 months) – they were no longer needed and simply deflated and discarded, like the last guest at the party.

So, I think it’s time we reclaimed our boobs. Of course our breasts, like the rest of our body will benefit from a well balanced diet, adequate sleep, rest, exercise and good hydration.

But it’s also important we have of course a well-fitting and supportive bra. And as our boobs do change in shape, the bras you had before pregnancy and breastfeeding may not be right for you now.

To check, put your bra on by bending from the waist and ensure your breasts are well supported in the cup of the bra. Make sure the straps are well fitting and balanced on your shoulders and not rising up at the back. Your breasts should be completely within the cup – no overhanging bits and no gaps! It’s a good idea to have a professional fitting as often as you can – most department stores offer this service for free.

Blackmores Naturopath, JulieAnne Atkinson says that as pregnancy and lactation will change your breasts, it’s a good idea to examine yourself at the start of pregnancy, to give yourself a good baseline for detecting any abnormal changes.

* And of course, become breast aware – look and feel your breasts each month and if you are at all concerned or notice anything unusual then see your GP.

Box: Pump those pecs!

• Working our pectoral muscles will help to support and work our breasts!

• Sit or stand with a straight spine, take your arms out to the side, at shoulder height and bend at the elbows. Then, as you exhale squeeze the elbows and forearms together, inhale and open up, taking care not to drop the elbows below shoulder height. Repeat ten times!

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