Breast Education

Throughout her life, a woman will experience a series of changes in her breasts. Becoming familiar with these changes will assist you in more thorough, meaningful monthly breast self-examinations. Some of the stages and changes include:

Prior to the beginning of regular menstrual cycles, a female’s breast will begin to grow as the result of hormones.

At the beginning of menopause, a woman’s mammary glands and ducts shrink. At the same time, the breasts may begin to sag as the result of the thinning of supportive tissue.

During the monthly menstrual cycle, a woman may notice her breasts swell – usually during the week before menstruation. This is caused by an influx of female hormones. Be warned: You may feel lumps during the menstruation period that are sensitive to the touch. However, these should shrink or vanish the week following the menstrual period. The week after your period is the recommended time to examine your breasts.

Pregnancy can bring on a series of changes in your breasts, including significant swelling. From tenderness to swelling of mammary glands, the changes will occur through the cessation of breastfeeding.

Breasts are mostly fatty tissue. Therefore, if your weigh fluctuates, it is likely the size of your breasts will too.

* During a breast self-exam, you may notice lumps or a change in texture. Knowing the difference between harmless and harmful breast lumps is important to your health.