Breast pain, in either the left, right or both breasts, is fairly common. From the time a female begins to develop breasts and begins menstruating, she may experience breast pain and other breast changes. Some of these changes normally occur during the menstrual cycle, during pregnancy, and with aging.
Breast lumps, pain and other changes may occur. However, you should rest assured that most breast lumps and other changes are not indications of cancer. Read over the following paragraphs for practical information on the symptoms of breast pain and some of its causes.
About the Breasts
Before analyzing pain, it is useful to have an idea of what exactly the breasts are and what they consist of. The breast is composed of several glands and ducts that lead to the nipple and the surrounding colored area called the areola. Under the areola area, the lactiferous ducts
are located. These fill with milk during lactation after a woman has a baby. When a girl reaches puberty, changing levels of hormones cause the ducts to grow and cause fat deposits in the breast tissue to increase. This process, by itself, can cause pain in the breasts.
While there are no muscles in the breasts, muscles do lie under each breast and cover the ribs. These normal structures inside the breasts can sometimes make them feel lumpy. This lumpiness may be especially noticeable in women who are thin or who have small breasts and is generally no cause for concern.
Why Do I Experience Pain?
Breast pain can be defined as any soreness or discomfort that occurs in the breasts (in either the left or right breast). The symptoms are often accompanied by swelling, which for whatever reason may be more pronounced in one breast than the other.
Periods of breast pain are commonly experienced during menstruation, pregnancy and breast-feeding. Pain in these cases tends to be unspecific and uncomfortable, but usually disappears when this period ends. Women may also suffer severe breast pain when approaching menopause, and in many cases this will continue during and following menopause.
What Causes Right Breast Pain?
Breast pain can be caused by a wide variety of factors. However, in a majority of cases, unbalanced levels of estrogen hormones during menopause are the principal cause.
Mastitis is an infection of the tissue of the breast that occurs most frequently during the time of breastfeeding. This infection causes pain, swelling, redness, and increased temperature of the breast. It can occur when a bacteria, often from the baby's mouth, enter a milk duct through a crack in the nipple. This causes an infection and painful inflammation of the breast.
This is because hormonal imbalances during the menstrual cycle affect the amount of estrogen and progesterone in the body. During menopause and pregnancy, when the body's estrogen levels are reduced, the right and left breast increase in size. This can be painful, and is further exacerbated when imbalances between estrogen and progesterone increases, meaning the breasts to grow to an even larger size, thus making them more susceptible to pain for longer periods.
What Can I Do about Pain in Breast?
If hormone imbalance is the cause for pain in the breast, treatment should involve returning hormone levels to normal. This can be attempted in a number of ways, though most effectively with a healthy diet and exercise regime. If lifestyle changes fail to help on its own, there are various well-regarded alternative treatments that have been shown to restore the body's balance of hormones naturally. Of course, best results are achieved combining both lifestyle changes and alternative treatments.
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