As absolutely adorable as her daughter Luna is, Chrissy Teigen has never been one to make motherhood look easy and glamorous. She’s not about to change her approach with new baby Miles — though it seems her body still has some surprises in store for her with her second child. On Saturday night, for instance, she showed off how nursing her son has transformed her breasts.
“Please look at my veins going to my milky boobs,” she said in a video posted on Twitter and her Instagram Stories, sounding simultaneously impressed, amused, grossed out, and a little worried by the fact that you can see many of her veins quite prominently. “What is this?”
Teigen isn’t the first to ask that question of the internet, as you can see on any message board frequented by parents. And every time, there are many comforting voices who chime in to say that this also happened to them when they were breastfeeding their children.
Those comforting answers were there for Teigen, too.
“Omg I’m still so veiny in that area!! Going on 2 years of BF in a few days! And they’re extra noticeable Bc I’m a little light,” Gen wrote.
The Twitter account for nursing advocacy organization La Leche League replied to Teigen’s query, explaining, “That can be normal because the skin on your breasts is thinner due to milk-related growth. Do you feel engorged?”
That can be normal because the skin on your breasts is thinner due to milk-related growth. Do you feel engorged?
— La Leche League USA (@LaLecheLeagueUS) June 10, 2018
If she answered yes to that question, and her engorgement is not solved simply by feeding baby Miles right away, there would be further actions she could take to ease her discomfort (including applying cool compresses or even cold cabbage leaves to the area, and anti-inflammatory meds). She would also want to make sure she doesn’t have a blocked duct and that her baby is latching enough to get the milk she’s giving him. (By week four with her second baby, Teigen would most certainly know whether Miles is latching, btw). Not treating an engorged breast can lead to mastitis, a painful infection.
In addition to La Leche League’s explanation of thinning skin, we thought we’d bring you another explanation of why veins in any part of the body can look more prominent at times, like just after a workout, from Scientific American: Rising blood pressure in the arteries causes plasma to flow out of capillaries and into compartments surrounding muscles, which in turn causes the swelling and hardening of muscles, Mark A. W. Andrews, professor of physiology at the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine, told S.A. “As a result of this swelling, cutaneous veins are pushed toward the skin surface, flatten to some extent, and appear to bulge. … This bulging is neither good nor bad but simply a result of normal physiological mechanisms that result from the rise in arterial blood pressure during exertion.”
You could say that about a lot of other things related to motherhood. It is not always pretty, guys. Teigen had enough followers commiserating with her and offering moral support, as they were months ago when she revealed that pregnancy made her gain weight in her nose, of all places.
“I do not miss the days of feeling like a milk machine. You’re doing awesome mama!” wrote Justice Rida.
I do not miss the days of feeling like a milk machine. You’re doing awesome mama!
— JusticeRida (@JusticeRida) June 10, 2018
I feel you, sister. Breastfeeding mom problems. (As I sit here nursing)
— Beth Heystek (@BethanyHeystek) June 10, 2018
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