Why Does My Breast Smell Like Baby Milk?

Why Does My Breast Smell Like Baby Milk?

Does your breast smell like baby milk? Should you be worried? Relax, take a breather, there’s no need to worry. It could seem very unusual for your breast to smell like breast milk especially when you haven’t started breastfeeding. This occurrence of course could seem strange especially if you are noticing it for the first time. 

But then a lot of things happen to your body when you are growing a human inside you. Your mind is probably scanning through a lot of thoughts, and you are probably wondering: Am I lactating? Why does my breast smell like baby milk? 

According to experts, this is very normal during pregnancy, your breast smelling like milk indicates the beginning of colostrum production which is a sign that your body is getting set for breastfeeding. 

However, a lot of reports have shown that women that are not pregnant, men, and babies often have similar experiences and this is because lactation can also occur even without pregnancy. Moving on, this article will be explaining in detail all the possible reasons why your breast could be smelling like breast milk with and without pregnancy.

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Why Does My Breast Smell Like Baby Milk While Pregnant

This is very common among breastfeeding moms and expectant mothers as well. This happens as a result of colostrum production and what this means is that your body is getting ready for breastfeeding. This can occur at any time, it doesn’t necessarily have to be during the third trimester. 

Do not freak out if the pre-milk or colostrum discharge has a yellow, red, brown, or orange color, as it is considered to be normal. Mostly this secretion comes out when the breast is stimulated either sexually, or with a massage. 

Lactating But Not Pregnant 

Usually, the one reason why some ladies (men and babies sometimes) experience lactation, is due to a condition popularly known as galactorrhea or hyper lactation. 

Your breast smells like milk because you are lactating. Lactation is very normal for pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers, however, it can happen to women that are not expecting, men and even babies. 

Most times these issues are absolutely nothing to worry about as they are mostly benign and can go away without treatments or medications. Nonetheless, it’s best to set up an appointment with a doctor for a proper diagnosis. 

All You Need To Know About Galactorrhea

Galactorrhea is a medical condition that could affect women, babies, and men, but usually, it causes milky discharge or secretion to emerge from the nipple despite not being pregnant, gender or age. Although it is not a disease, it could be an indication of an underlying health issue.

This condition called Galactorrhea or hyperlactation is a benign medical issue that can be easily treated. And in some cases, the cause of galactorrhea can not be specifically determined and the issue resolves itself without the need for medications or treatment.

However, it comes with symptoms like headaches, irregular periods, reduced sex drive, hair growth on the chest or chin, acne, and nausea. 

What Causes Galactorrhea?

Although some reasons for galactorrhea can not be determined, it is commonly triggered by hormonal imbalance, excessive stimulation of the breasts, medications, miscarriage, and an indication of a breast tumor which we will be discussing extensively below;

1. Hormonal Imbalance

Hormones are the main cause of hyper-lactation, this happens when the thyroid gland responsible for producing enough hormones for the body, fails to perform its duties, and a large amount of prolactin is released causing the body to produce a large amount of milky fluid. 

2. Over Stimulation Of The Breast

When the breasts are excessively stimulated either through sex or massage, it can lead to galactorrhea, especially when your hormones are not stable at the time. 

3. Medications And Herbs Side Effects

Some sort of medication such as birth control pills, tranquilizers, and antidepressants can alter or affect the mammary glands. When the mammary gland gets affected it begins to produce milky secretions. Also, herbs such as fennel, fenugreek, and anise seed can encourage milk production.

4. Miscarriage

It is possible for the body to lactate after a miscarriage. Although this is depressing, the body still has to undergo some changes after the occurrence of a miscarriage, so when lactation happens it’s due to a hormonal imbalance caused by the previous pregnancy. 

5. Other Health Issues 

Health issues like a tumor in the breast, nerve disorders, kidney diseases, and spinal cord injuries can lead to galactorrhea. The body might produce too much prolactin which in return results in excessive milk production. 

Final Thoughts

Lactation is the main reason why your breast could be smelling like baby (breast) milk, and although it is very common for women to lactate during pregnancy, it may not seem okay for women without pregnancy to experience it.

Although this occurrence should not be a cause for alarm as it usually goes on its own without treatment, you should see a doctor when the milky discharge from your nipples is excessive.

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