Breast pain affects approximately 70% of women. It is defined by any feeling of discomfort, tenderness, or sharp pain in one or both breasts. Cyclical breast pain is the most common type, and it is periodic during menstruation, pregnancy, and menopause. The primary cause of cyclical breast pain is hormone fluctuations. These hormonal changes cause inflammation of breast tissue. Breast pain can range from mild to severe discomfort. There are several ways to relieve cyclical breast pain, and this article will feature the best natural tips for pain relief.
Applying cold compresses or heating pads to the breasts can help reduce cyclical breast pain. Additional helpful home remedies include taking a warm bath with soothing essential oils, like rosemary or lavender, and wearing loose cotton clothes. Massaging breasts in the shower with soap can also help relieve breast pain.
Maintaining a balanced diet is essential to overall health. A healthy diet should include protein, fruits and vegetables, complex carbohydrates, dairy, and essential fatty acids. Eating three healthy meals a day, in addition to small, nutritious snacks every three to four hours is ideal. Salmon, avocados, spinach, kale, and guavas are all nutrient-rich foods that have been known to help lessen breast pain.
The British Journal of Sports Medicine published a study that concluded exercise influences breast pain. Researchers say that ill-fitting sports bras are the main cause of breast pain during exercise, so it is essential to get a properly fitted, supportive bra before working out. Although it seems counterproductive to continue exercising, it has been shown to be beneficial in the long run. Exercising regularly can considerably increase energy, improve mood, and reduce stress. Walking, biking, and swimming are all excellent low-impact workouts that can help ease breast pain.
Herbal remedies are a natural and economical method to treating breast pain. Two popular herbs for relieving cyclical breast pain are chasteberry and soy. Chasteberry helps reduce prolactin levels, which in turn reduces breast pain. Soy contains phytoestrogenic compounds, which raise estrogen levels and ease breast pain, making it popular among menopausal women.
Stress makes the body more susceptible to pain and other illnesses. It is important to reduce stress as much as possible to improve overall health. Yoga and meditation are beneficial stress relievers. Reading, listening to music, or getting a massage can also be helpful in reducing stress and preventing pain.
Breast pain is a bothersome symptom that affects around two-thirds of adult women on average. The primary cause of cyclical breast pain is the fluctuation of estrogen and progesterone. There are several methods to relieving cyclical breast pain, such as exercising, eating healthy, and trying at home remedies, like cold compresses and taking warm baths.
- Brown, N. et al. (2014). The experience of breast pain (mastalgia) in female runners of the 2012 London Marathon and its effect on exercise behavior. British Journal of Sports Medicine, 48, 320-325. doi:10.1136/bjsports-2013-092175
- National Health Service UK. (2012). Cyclical Breast Pain. Retrieved October 29, 2014, from http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/breastpaincyclical/pages/introduction.aspx
- National Institutes of Health. (2012). Breast - premenstrual pain and tenderness. Retrieved October 29, 2014, from http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/003153.htm
- University of Maryland Medical Center. (2014). Breast pain. Retrieved October 29, 2014, from http://umm.edu/health/medical/ency/articles/breast-pain