Discovering you’re pregnant may indeed be a joyful time; however some of the changes your body will experience over the next nine months may be less so. From the acne to the weight gain you’ll likely experience a revolving door of physical changes. One such change may be a nipple discharge in pregnancy.
Yes, nipple discharge is normal in early pregnancy. In fact, you may notice quite a few changes related to your breasts over the next nine months. Nipple discharge is unlikely to be the first change your breasts experience; clear discharge will likely occur following breast growth and tenderness. Some women may even notice a darkening around the nipples and areolas. The hormones released during pregnancy can affect skin pigmentation. Think of it like this: if this is your first pregnancy, your breasts are simply activating. As your baby grows, your breasts realize that they will soon be needed, so they start working out the kinks.
During the first trimester of a nipple discharge pregnancy, discharge from the breasts is likely to be clear. This is simply your body’s way of starting to clean the pipes for the colostrum and then the milk. Sometime during the third trimester you’re likely to experience a thicker, milky discharge. This is colostrum; it’s jam-packed with all types of good stuff for your baby. Several days after birth your body naturally replaces the colostrum with milk.
While some expecting mothers experience every possible breast change from changes in skin pigmentation to enlarged nipples, others may only experience one or two. It’s important to know that it’s entirely normal; you shouldn’t worry if a friend experienced different changes than you do. In fact, it’s typical for a woman with subsequent pregnancies to experience different changes in her breasts with her second or third child.
It’s also normal not to experience nipple discharge; pregnancy can take different forms for different mothers. A lack of discharge doesn’t mean that you’ll experience any difficulties breastfeeding. Everyone’s body works differently. In fact, the discharge may be so slight you may not even notice it! There are two instances in which you should contact your doctor or midwife immediately. A discharge that appears pink or bloody should be cause for concern. Although clear, yellowish, or white discharge is all par for the course, the appearance of blood is not normal. Second, you should contact your healthcare professional if you notice any abnormal lumps in your breasts, especially if they are accompanied by pain or extreme tenderness. Although your breasts will increase to accommodate the swelling milk glands, specific, painful lumps may signal an important medical issue.