MAIN CAUSES OF BREAST PAIN

Breast pain is a common symptom that affects about 70% of women, and may be caused by common hormonal changes related to PMS, menstruation or menopause, but in some cases may be related to other more serious situations such as mastitis during breastfeeding, presence of cysts in the breast, or even, breast cancer.

The pain in the breasts can be controlled with homemade solutions such as the use of warm compresses, massages during bathing, and the use of comfortable clothes and bras, the use of medications being very rare. In case the pain and discomfort remain for more than 15 days and if it seems that it is not related to menstruation or menopause, you should go to the gynecologist for an evaluation, and if necessary, perform tests.

The mastalgia can occur in only one breast or both at the same time, and can even radiate into the arms. This breast pain can be mild, being considered normal, but it can also be severe, preventing the performance of daily tasks. We indicate here the most common causes and when it may be cancer, which is the woman’s main fear.

1. Beginning of puberty
Girls between the ages of 10 and 14 who are entering puberty may have a small pain or discomfort in the breasts that are beginning to grow, and become more sore.

What to do: No specific treatment is necessary, but bathing with warm water can relieve discomfort. In this phase it is also important to use a bra that is a good support and that is suitable for the size of the breasts.

2. SPM or menstruation
Before and during menstruation, hormonal alterations can cause mastalgia in some women, not being serious, despite causing discomfort every month. It can cause stitches and tenderness in the breasts or nipples. When the pain is mild or moderate and lasts from 1 to 4 days, it is considered normal, but when it lasts more than 10 days and radiates to the arms or armpits it causes many disorders and you should go to the doctor to be investigated.

What to do: It is rarely necessary to take medication, but the intake of contraceptive pills can help relieve symptoms, being useful also to reduce menstrual cramps. When the pain is very bothersome, the gynecologist can indicate the intake of Bromocriptine, Danazol, Tamoxifen; and as natural options the Agnus Castus, evening primrose oil or primrose, or vitamin E, which should be taken for 3 months to then evaluate the results.

3. Pregnancy
The breasts can be especially sensitive at the beginning and end of pregnancy, due to the growth of the mammary glands or the production of breast milk. If you suspect pregnancy, see the first 10 symptoms of pregnancy.

What to do: Putting on warm compresses can help relieve discomfort, as well as take a bath with warm water and massage the region. In pregnancy it is recommended to use special bras for breastfeeding, since they provide better support of the breasts.

4. Breast pain during breastfeeding
During breastfeeding when the breasts are full of milk, the breasts can become hard and very painful. An acute pain, located in the nipple, can also occur, this can indicate the existence of a crack, which causes intense pain and even bleeding.

Another more serious situation that can occur during breastfeeding or even a few days before delivery is that breast milk stagnates and obstructs the ducts where it leaves, and may cause an infection called mastitis, which generates intense pain in the breasts, in the areola or nipple, and is often accompanied by other symptoms such as redness, lumps that are palpated and heat from the affected area.

What to do: If the breast is full of milk, the best strategy is to give the baby a feed or extract the milk with a manual or electric pump. If the nipples are sore, the area should be carefully observed to verify if there is any plugged duct or crack in the place where the pain occurs. So if there is a problem with breastfeeding, the obstetrical nurse or pediatrician can personally tell you what to do to solve this problem.

5. Use of medications
The taking of certain medications such as Methyldopa, Spironolactone, Digoxin, Oxymetholone and Chlorpromazine have breast pain as a side effect.

What to do: The doctor should be informed about the emergence of this symptom and also of its intensity. The doctor can check the possibility of indicating the taking of another drug that does not cause mastalgia.

6. Cysts in the breasts
Some women have irregular breast tissue called fibrocystic breasts, which can cause pain mainly before menstruation. This type of problem is not linked to cancer, but it also causes the formation of nodules in the breasts that can grow or disappear on their own.

What to do: In cases where the pain is not related to menstruation, medications such as Acetaminophen, Aspirin or Ibuprofen can be used, under medical indication.

7. Change of contraceptive pills
At the beginning of the taking or changing of contraception, there may be pain in the breasts, which may be mild or moderate and usually affects the two breasts at the same time, and there may also be a burning sensation.

What to do: Massage during bathing and the use of a comfortable bra can be a good solution while the body does not adapt to the contraceptive pill, which can take 2 to 3 months.

In addition to these causes there are many others, such as trauma, physical activity, thrombophlebitis, sclerosing adenosis, benign tumors or macrocyst, which may be

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MAIN CAUSES OF BREAST PAIN AN WHAT TO DO - /10

Summary

Breast pain is a common symptom that affects about 70% of women, and may be caused by common hormonal changes related to PMS, menstruation or menopause, but in some cases may be related to other more serious situations such as mastitis during breastfeeding, presence of cysts in the breast, or even, breast cancer.

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