Spot-On Guide to the Different Kinds of Breasts You’ll Have When You’re a Nursing Mom

Has there ever been anything more applicable to your life?
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By Stephanie Grassullo, Associate Editor
Published June 11, 2019
mom who has fallen asleep while breastfeeding
Image: iStock

Breastfeeding is a beautiful journey for mom and baby. Besides the many health-related benefits, it also offers a sweet moment of intimacy between you and your mini. But we’d be lying if we didn’t say there are a few not-so-glamorous aspects to the job. For one, your breasts nearly have a mind of their own. Dutch illustrator Anna Denise Floor created a guide to the many different boobs a breastfeeding mom will have, and to say it’s relatable is an understatement.

Floor calls out a “non-exhaustive” guide to what a nursing mom’s breasts will look like on any given day, and the descriptions are spot on. One image shows a picture of a mom whose breasts are swollen. The caption underneath it reads: Baby slept through the night (no touching!). When your infant somehow sleeps through the entire night, it’s certainly a cause for celebration. The one downfall being, you’ve now got swollen breasts that feel like they’re ready to burst. Motherhood—there’s no winning.

Let’s not forget the fun that happens when your nursing baby starts teething. Ouch! The silver lining? The biting should only be temporary if baby has been successfully breastfeeding up until this point. And even if you don’t have a biter on your hands, you probably put up with your fair share of scratches. Who knew a tiny human could have such sharp nails? The illustration of a mom covered in red cuts and scratches really hits home for many.

Another all-too-relatable breastfeeding woe is when you’re out in public and hear a baby cry. You don’t even need to look down to know you’re leaking. Why’s that? Though it’s a highly-debated theory, some believe a woman’s emotional response to the sound of a baby crying releases oxytocin in the blood, which is the same hormone that triggers the let-down of milk when you’re breastfeeding. While the verdict is still out on this one, there are many women out there who will attest to it being a real-life problem.

If you’re a nursing mom and have experienced some (or all!) of the situations Floor calls out in her graphic, take comfort in knowing you’re not alone. Be sure to check out some solutions to common breastfeeding problems to help make for an even smoother experience.

Please note: The Bump and the materials and information it contains are not intended to, and do not constitute, medical or other health advice or diagnosis and should not be used as such. You should always consult with a qualified physician or health professional about your specific circumstances.

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