How Are Breast Pain And The Menstrual Cycle Linked?

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With every period that we have, we always experience a balance of two types of things – the known and the unknown. The known stuff can range from knowing that your period is going to last for 3 days or 5, that one of the tell-tale signs of your periods coming is random acne popping up on your face. And then there’s the unknown stuff, now we aren’t saying that these things don’t happen to you on and off. But that they happen so randomly over the months that you don’t see a pattern. One such thing is breast pain.

Now, not everyone has breast pain randomly around their periods, some people realize that their periods are near because they have breast pain. While a heads up is always nice, sore breasts are not. So, how exactly are breast pain and the menstrual cycle linked?

Well, as you may already know, hormones play a huge role in our monthly cycles. And these hormones are responsible for a host of things, including fatigue, headaches, moodiness and you guessed it, also breast pain. The condition that causes breast soreness and pain related to periods are known as Cyclical Mastalgia.

While the medical community cannot vouch for the exact mechanism, experts do know that the fluctuation of one’s hormone levels before and during the period, can impact how the breasts feel during that time. More specifically the increasing levels of estrogen in the first two weeks of your cycle can cause your breasts to get bigger, while increasing amounts of progesterone during the second half may puff up your milk ducts. The combination of this can lead to your breasts swelling and feeling tender.

Since every woman is different, her symptoms and period will also be different. But some things will always be in common, some of these things that your breasts may face during your period are:

  • Swelling
  • Tenderness
  • Aches
  • Soreness
  • Changes in texture

Hormonal fluctuations can also lead to fibrocystic breast changes, which means that they can lead to you developing non-cancerous lumps in your breasts before your period, which can contribute to breast tenderness.

The phenomenon is similar to the one that many women face when they are pregnant.

Breast tenderness is common during pregnancy, and it’s due to the rising levels of progesterone during their term.

While sore breasts might seem like a fact of life, you don’t need to just suffer through the experience. Here are a few steps you can take to curb changes in your breasts during your monthly cycle:

  • Eat a diet lower in fat, avoiding high-fat foods.
  • Skip caffeine, which means no coffee, tea, cola, and chocolate.
  • Avoid the salt for a couple of weeks before your period starts.
  • Wear a bra that fits you properly and provides good support.
  • Aim for a daily cardio workout.

Word to the wise, if you are dealing with period-related breast soreness, you should still bring it up with your doctor if it’s bothering you. Together, you can figure out the best way for you and your breasts to find relief

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