Will I Produce Breast Milk In The Third Trimester? Here's How Your Body Prepares

The changes your body goes through during pregnancy are countless. Along with causing your midnight cravings and excess facial hair, your hormones are working overtime, ensuring your body is well prepared for a baby. The third trimester seems to be the most exhausting part as you count down to your little one, and if you are planning on breastfeeding, you may wonder, will I produce breast milk in the third trimester?

According to Kelly Mom, from week 16 of your pregnancy, your body can start producing colostrum — an early, concentrated version of breast milk that is packed with nutrients and antibodies. When your baby is born, the website explained, colostrum is there to give them the early nutrition they need, and will turn into mature milk after about two to five days.

From your second trimester onward, noted Baby Center, the hormone prolactin prompts your milk ducts to take sugars, fats, and proteins from your blood supply to make milk, and your entire milk duct system and colostrum are fully developed by the time your baby is born. It is your body’s way of being prepared to provide for a new baby.

Some women even find that their colostrum begins leaking in the third trimester, noted What To Expect. While not all pregnant women may go through it, there’s no need to worry if you do see the yellowish liquid leaking from your breasts, and you can easily find nursing bra pads to absorb the leaks.

So while you bask in your pregnancy glow and fret over your swollen feet, it’s nice to know that your body is working hard to ensure you’re able to provide nutrition for your baby. Because breastfeeding can be tricky for some women, it’s a good idea to talk to a lactation consultant even before your baby is born so they can give you proper advice and support. You'll want to be mentally prepared for what’s to come.