Hormonal changes during pregnancy also shape your nipples so that your baby can more easily latch on. The nipples grow and become more defined, often sticking out more than they did before pregnancy. The areolas, the skin surrounding the nipples, grow with the nipples, get darker and develop raised bumps on their surface, which are called Montgomery's tubercles. These are actually small glands that produce an oily substance that protects your nipples and areolas from cracking or drying out during these changes as well as during breastfeeding, Herbst says. Avoid applying soap directly to your nipples and areolas, so you don't wash away the oil and dry out the skin. Just let your breasts do their job because, frankly, they are pretty amazing at it.
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