Hurting breasts were the least of my problems that morning I dropped off my older twins at their school, but I met one of their teachers sitting morose early that morning, and me being a good daughter-in-law ☺ (she’s from my husband’s hometown) decided to ask the reason for the long face so early in the morning.
“Don’t mind me jare” she said, as she made some effort to put life into her face. “It’s that time of the month and my boobs are aching badly.”
“Oh!” I said as I nodded my head. I understood that kind of fullness which comes at that time of the month. But she added that hers was always so painful, that wearing a bra and even removing one, was always a torture and it happens, only in the days leading to the arrival of the witch. It’s one of her PMS symptoms.
As we chatted, other teachers came round, and from their experiences, it was obvious that most of them have this symptom, and have had it for years.
Almost a decade to the day we were having a girls’ chat somewhere on my school campus, when one of us who disappeared and reappeared later.
She had found lumps in her breasts. Thank God, they were not cancerous. She had surgery to remove them, which was successful and, of course, left some scars on her boobs, but those were a small price to pay for her good health.
It turned out that the doctors told her she was prone to having lumps in the breasts, a condition known as fibrocystic breast tissue. Now, the danger was these lumps could be cancerous or benign. Just imagine having to live with that reality as a young lady. Thankfully, back then, the lumps had been benign.
But the aching was another issue altogether. She was moderately endowed and felt the aches when it started in every tissue of her breasts, as she sometimes just had to rush home, so she could remove the bra and get some fresh air on her ladies, and even that was painful at the time.
After the surgery, the pain was relieved a bit but by the time we left school, she was complaining about feeling the lumps again, and had to see her doctor to determine if they were benign (again).
This friend of mind got blessed again, as the lumps were benign. She is now a momma and hopefully the whole pregnancy and breastfeeding experience has helped in some ways, as she seems to have dropped off the face of the earth right now, so I can’t reach her.
If you pay attention to your body, you will find out that your breasts ache for different reasons and we will look at the several normal reasons your breasts are achy, and how to give them some much-needed TLC.
The witch is coming:
The most common cause of breast pain is a change in hormones that comes along with your period.
This is normal as your body responds to changes in estrogen levels. You will see that typically manifested in swelling and tenderness on the day (it can also be days) before your period begins and the first day of your flow.
Experts call this type of breasts soreness cyclic pain, since it’s related to your menstrual cycle.
The good news: It should, and most often does, go away when your period ends at the latest.
To relieve the achiness, Taraneh Shirazian, M.D., Assistant Professor of Obstetrics, Gynaecology and Reproductive Science at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York suggested taking birth control pills, since they prevent ovulation and keep estrogen levels stable.
And if you’d rather not, then primrose oil supplements may also ease soreness, she says.
You have pulled something:
Now, I know you’re probably wondering how’s it possible to hurt yourself in a way that makes your breasts ache. Well, you never can tell. It can happen when you’re lifting furniture or carrying one those heavy bags that may strain your pectoral muscles, which are beneath the breast tissue.
You can treat it by applying some heat pads or take some pain killers
You have lumpy breasts:
Like my friend mentioned above, if you’ve been identified as a woman with lumpy breast tissue (technically known as fibrocystic breast tissue), then you are probably well acquainted with breast tenderness linked to your menstrual cycle.
According to the National Breast Cancer Foundation, this bumpy, uneven breast tissue is actually characterized by fluid-filled cysts, and it’s not necessarily linked to breast cancer.
However, they may be more sensitive to hormonal changes.
You’re taking too much caffeine:
If your breasts feel particularly lumpy and you’ve got a three-cup-a-day habit, ask your doctor if you should consider cutting down.
You’re doing more exercise:
Great work with that, however, your impressive round of push-ups or new weight-lifting routine may be causing pain in your breast region.
In this case, the discomfort may actually be coming from the muscles underneath the breasts, again your pectoral muscles. The tightening and relaxing routine of these set of muscles lying right under the breast may actually be the source of the tenderness.
Get relief by applying heating pads and taking a pain reliever as directed.
In all, temporary breast soreness and sensitivity is somewhat to be expected and shouldn’t have you running to the doctor’s. It usually just lasts a few days.
In the unlikely event that the pain lingers around, or gets worse, then it’s time to see your doctor.
It is not a bad idea to also get in the habit of regularly giving your breasts some looking over, after your period every month just to make sure, there aren’t any changes in appearance, texture, or tenderness. If you notice anything out of the ordinary, talk to your doctor.
And if you’re not menstruating regularly, pick a date you will give your boobs a look over once a month. And ensure you stick to that date.
Give your breasts the attention they deserve.
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