Women experience some common changes during pregnancy, such as food cravings or morning sickness, but some changes may be unconventional and include facial features.
Many women have reported nose changes and shared photos and videos on social media before and during pregnancy of their noses to prove the occurrence of the so-called “pregnancy nose”.
It is not known how common this change is, since everyone’s hormone levels are different, and each woman reacts differently to the changes that occur in her.
According to Professor Adam Taylor, director of the Clinical Anatomy Training Center and professor of anatomy at Lancaster University, the facial change may be “more noticeable in some women.”
“The reason this happens is because of the dramatic increase in hormone levels during pregnancy, especially due to the increase in estrogen levels, which relaxes the blood vessels in all tissues of the body. This allows more blood to flow into the tissues of the nose, leading to nasal congestion,” Taylor told The Conversation. It stretches and changes shape and also looks bigger and swollen.”
However, there is no cause for concern as nasal growth “usually subsides” within six weeks of birth once hormones return to normal levels, Prof Taylor said.
Professor Taylor explained that a significant increase in hormone levels can also cause nosebleeds and congestion, a runny or itchy nose, which is medically known as pregnancy rhinitis. It usually affects about one in five pregnant women.
And a 2013 study published in the journal Advances found that in Experimental Medicine and Biology Among 117 pregnant women, 39% suffered from rhinitis during pregnancy.
But Prof Taylor notes that the “pregnant nose” isn’t the only odd physical change women may experience during pregnancy. “The heart also becomes thicker than muscle and changes in size during pregnancy,” he said.
He explained that this is because at this time the heart has to work harder, beating up to eight times faster than before pregnancy, in order to pump the extra volume of blood through the body and to the baby.
In some cases, the amount of blood circulating in the body doubles during pregnancy. This helps ensure that enough oxygen is supplied to the baby to support growth.
Other differences may also include changes in skin color, oral health, and increased hair growth.
Professor Taylor said: “The increase in estrogen and progesterone levels can make the gums more susceptible to bleeding, infection and damage.
In fact, almost 70% of pregnant women suffer from gingivitis. He added: “Teeth are increasingly susceptible to damage and decay during pregnancy, especially if a woman suffers from morning sickness. This is because stomach acid can dissolve the protective lining of the teeth.”
He added that changes in estrogen levels and an increase in the hormone relaxin (a hormone released during pregnancy helps relax the pelvic muscles so that they expand enough in preparation for childbirth) can also cause a sensation of “trembling” teeth.
Source: Daily Mail