Booby Trap: the dangers of not being correctly fitted for maternity and nursing bras
Bottles, breast pumps, bassinets; as a new mummy, all of your thoughts will be focused on the bundle you’re introducing to the world. As mothers, we’re often guilty of prioritising others before ourselves, so getting fitted for a maternity or nursing bra is probably not high on your agenda. After all, you may think that any bra will do as long as you can fasten it. You don’t have the time or, let’s face it, energy to consider other options. But the truth is, well-fitting maternity and nursing bras are essential for maintaining breast health and shape. Plus, they’re designed to provide the support and comfort your changing body craves during pregnancy, whilst breastfeeding and postpartum.
Here are some reasons why getting fitted for a maternity or nursing bra is so important and the risk to your body if you stick with ill-fitting bras.
Comfort for Your Changing Body
During pregnancy, your body grows as rapidly as your developing baby. As your breasts grow and your belly expands, you may find that your regular bras no longer fit. This can be uncomfortable and cause pain and strain on your back, shoulders, and neck. Maternity bras are designed to support and comfort your growing body. They have wider straps, a wider band, and more cup room to accommodate your growing breasts. They also have a flexible, stretchy fabric that adapts to your changing shape.
At Janice Rose Lingerie, we always recommend pregnant people wear non-wired bras during pregnancy. This is because wired bras can restrict the proper growth of breast tissue. Not only that, but wired bras can also limit milk production, so it’s something to keep in mind if you’re thinking of giving breastfeeding a go.
Convenience for Breastfeeding
Once your baby has arrived, if you’re breastfeeding, you’ll need a different type of bra: a nursing bra. Nursing bras have unique features that make breastfeeding easier and more convenient. And whilst breastfeeding is the most natural thing in the world, when you’re new to it, it can take some time to find your rhythm and confidence; nursing bras can help you feed discreetly. They have clips or snaps that allow you to easily open and close the cups, so you can breastfeed your baby without taking off your bra. They also have a softer and more flexible fabric that can be easily pulled aside or down for easy access to the breast.
Getting Fitted for the Future
We’ve explained the difference between maternity bras and nursing bras. Let’s move on to why it’s essential for your breast health to get regularly fitted during pregnancy and postpartum. We’ll even explain the process we take at Janice Rose Lingerie.
The Benefits of Well-Fitting Maternity & Nursing Bra
You should consider being measured for a well-fitting maternity and nursing bra because:
- You have large, full, heavy breasts: Well-fitting maternity and nursing bras are designed to hold up and support the extra weight of your developing breasts. Women are far more likely to have breast augmentation surgery after pregnancy because of the change in breast shape. Well-fitting bras during and after pregnancy protect the Cooper ligaments that keep your breasts looking perky. By supporting them you help prevent your breasts from sagging, reducing the need for invasive operations.
- You’re leaking: If you’ve got leaky breasts from excess milk, there’s room to accommodate nursing pads in a nursing bra.
- You’ve got sore nipples: A nursing bra have room to hold protective shells in place to guard your sore nipples and help them heal.
- You plan to exercise: It’s important to wear a supportive bra, especially if your breasts are large and full of breast milk. Without firm support, the movement of your breasts during exercise could put you at risk of developing mastitis and you could damage your Cooper Ligaments.
- You need some extra confidence: We have to give our bodies a chance to heal and realign after pregnancy. “Bouncing back” is a ridiculous societal demand we’ve placed on mums. But that’s not to say we don’t like to feel happy in our bodies and clothes. A good-fitting bra can help you look and feel better by giving you a more flattering shape and minimising the appearance of any well-earned lumps and bumps.
Try on every trimester
So where can you get fitted for a maternity or nursing bra? Many lingerie stores offer bra fitting services; some even specialise in maternity and nursing bras. You can also find online bra fitting guides and measurement charts, although it’s best to get fitted in person if you can. When you go for a fitting, wear a comfortable bra and clothing, and be prepared to try on several different sizes and styles.
At Janice Rose Lingerie, we suggest getting measured as follows:
- Once every trimester whilst pregnant. This is because your breasts grow rapidly during 9 months of pregnancy.
- At 38 weeks pregnant. This is to prepare for a nursing bra. We usually suggest a bra two-cup sizes bigger than you currently wear. This is to accommodate breast growth when your milk comes in.
- Two weeks to a month after you finish your last breastfeed. Your breasts will reduce rapidly after breastfeeding. This means the support your breasts need will look different from when you were pregnant. It’s also a chance to buy new underwear and feel good about your breastfeeding journey.
- Two weeks after pregnancy. If you’re not planning on breastfeeding, you should get measured for a bra roughly two to three weeks after giving birth. If you’re feeling up to it, of course. Your breasts have likely changed shape during pregnancy.
You’re probably looking at this timeline and thinking, wow, that’s a lot of money I’ve got to spend on bras when I’m buying for the baby and about to go on maternity leave. The good news is we stock maternity and nursing bras that adapt to your changing body.
Getting fitted for a maternity or nursing bra is an essential part of preparing for pregnancy and breastfeeding. A good bra keeps your breasts healthy, provides support and comfort, and makes breastfeeding more convenient and discreet. So don’t underestimate the importance of a good bra – it’s an investment in your comfort and confidence as a new mama.
Please come see us for a fitting at whatever stage you’re at. It’s important to prioritise yourself as well as your baby.