Know why breasts can be tender and hurt
Tender breasts often alarm women, especially with the growing concern and awareness about breast cancer. If your breasts feel tender, there can be a lot of other reasons, which are not necessarily breast cancer.
Tenderness in the breasts is a very common problem faced by a lot of women. While breast cancer is definitely one of the reasons for tender breasts, it is not the only reason. In fact, breast cancer is one of the most uncommon reasons for tenderness. Essentially, breasts feel tender when there is heightened hormonal activity, especially concerning the reproductive system.
Symptoms associated with tender breasts
Breast Health Trivia
Severe tenderness of breasts is common during the first trimester of pregnancy. So, do not consume pain killers without consulting a doctor.
Regular exercise can relieve tenderness in the breasts by keeping hormonal function healthy.
You can notice several symptoms related to tenderness in the breasts. Pain is often an accompaniment and can be felt at the slightest provocation. Hardening of the nipples due to sexual arousal or cold weather can cause pain in the breasts. You feel very uncomfortable on touching, applying pressure and movement of breasts. Slight swelling is also noticed in several cases. Breasts feel heavy and ache all the time.
Read on below for certain reasons which cause this undesirable breast tenderness.
Common causes of tender breasts
The most common causes of tender breast are hormonal changes in the body that can happen during menopause, in the days before menstrual cycle, during pregnancy and during administration of hormone replacement therapy. All these changes in the body cause enormous fluctuation of hormonal activity. For example, during pregnancy and in the days before menstruation, the body prepares itself for activities such as breastfeeding that need to be preformed after childbirth. So, the mammary glands expand to accommodate milk and water, which makes the breasts appear slightly swollen and tender.
Imbalance of estrogen, which is the hormone responsible for feminine developments in the body, is another major cause for tenderness. Too much release of the hormone or too little release can both lead to this condition.
Wearing brassiere that does not fit properly can also cause tenderness. You need to ensure that your lingerie is not too tight so as to cause compression of the breasts. Wearing tight brassieres can inhibit shapely growth and lead to stretch marks on breasts as well.
Uncommon causes of tender breasts
Besides the common factors, there are several other factors that are not commonly responsible for tenderness but cannot be ruled out without medical confirmation either. Breast cancer is one of the most uncommon cause, although most women assume this as the main cause of tenderness and hit the panic button. Some other reasons are: cysts, use of medication, breast trauma, too much stress, mental and psychological problems and mastitis.
While pain in breasts is best discussed with the doctor and treated; it is also not an immediate cause of panic unless it is accompanied by bleeding nipples, change in nipple size, lumps and acute piercing pain in the breasts. Also, you need to observe if the pain occurs just before menstruation or without a pattern. While cancer might not always be the cause, infection of milk ducts or other breast diseases cannot be ruled out either. Consulting a doctor is therefore, necessary in such conditions so that you are safe and healthy.