Boobs and periods pretty much go hand-in-hand. From our experience, we know Aunt Flo is on the way because our boobs fluctuate in shape or size and become sore or tender – it’s almost like a mystical power that predicts when she’ll be here! Some people are lucky enough to not experience this, but if you get tender or painful breasts before or during your period have you ever wondered why it happens or wanted to know how to relieve it? We explain below, and go through our top tips for combatting breast pain during your period!
Tenderness of the breasts during or before your period is known as cyclical mastalgia in the science world. In short, it’s to do with your hormone cycle throughout the month. The levels of oestrogen and progesterone in your body can fluctuate, and during times where the levels of these two hormones are high it can cause an increase in breast size or a change in their shape or fullness. These changes can contribute to your boobs feeling sore or tender due to the swelling. In some cases it can also lead to fibrocystic breast changes, in other words non-cancerous lumps, appearing shortly before your period (remember to ‘know your normal’ and always get any unusual changes checked out by your GP!) – which again can cause tenderness and pain.
So that’s the science bit out of the way, you know what causes your boobs to hurt at certain times of the month so now how do you combat it? You can always rely on painkillers but it’s most important to make sure you have a properly fitted bra! When your bras don’t fit properly, the wires could be digging into your breast tissue which can cause discomfort at the best of times, let alone when your boobs are super tender. Lack of support from the band can also mean heavy breasts aren’t supported, meaning not only painful boobs but a sore back and neck too! Check out our fitting guide to make sure you know what you’re looking for in a well-fitted bra.
If you’re in the right size but find that your bust fluctuates so much that you just don’t fit in them during your period, you might want to consider investing in a bra or two that can accommodate for the larger size and keep them for that occasion.
Our top style pick for period boobs would be a stretch lace bra like Curvy Kate Ellace, Pour Moi Electra, Flirtelle Viola or Panache Envy. These styles all have comfortable, sturdy bottom cups while the top section is made from a soft stretch lace that moulds itself to your bust and can accommodate up to an extra 1-2 cup sizes!
In rarer cases, some women will find that bras are just too painful to wear. If you’re in the same boat, we suggest trying out a soft, non-wired bra or simple bralette to keep your bust lightly supported without the need for a proper bra. Something like Curvy Kate Unwind, Cleo by Panache Lyzy, Panache Andorra or even a non-wired sports bra are great choices.
We hope these tips will help to relieve your period boob pain, but remember that if you’re ever unsure about something always check in with your GP! Do you have any other tips for combating breast pain? Let us know in the comments or over on social @Brastop!