Sore Breasts after Period (Mastodynia): 10 Possible Causes and Treatments

Sore breasts after period

Breast pain or mastodynia is common in women. Women may experience breast pain during menstruation or before it. Tenderness before the period is quite common, but some may experience sore breasts after period.

However, some will continue to experience breast tenderness throughout or even after the menstrual cycle.

Sore breasts are often a notification that a woman may be pregnant due to increased levels of progesterone. But if you have just had your periods, it’s unlikely that the sore breast is a symptom of pregnancy.

In this article, we have explained what could be causing sore breasts after your period.

Related Reading: How to Treat Burning Sensation in Breast?

Sore Breasts after Period: Am I Pregnant?

Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is often associated with breast tenderness and other symptoms similar to the ones experienced during early pregnancy.

Pregnancy causes elevated levels of progesterone in the body which leads to sore breasts. But what if you are not pregnant?

In some cases, women continue to feel sore breasts throughout their menstrual cycle, and their breasts still hurt after periods.

As you have already had your period, this doesn’t suggest pregnancy. If you want to know, “why do my breasts hurt after my periods,” read on to know.

What Causes Sore Breasts after Period?

Women who are not pregnant but still feel their breasts are sore after periods would definitely be searching for a potential cause of this persistent pain.

Often a slight tenderness can be normal, but it’s important to understand the cause of your pain. You should see the doctor if you feel the pain doesn’t subside with time.

Related Reading: What Causes Spotting After Period?

1. Hormonal Changes

Pain and discomfort of sore breasts after your period can be troublesome. This pain can often be related to the changes in hormonal levels.

These changes can be caused by premenstrual conditions, menstruation, pregnancy, puberty, or even menopause.

Aging can also be a factor as you near the age of menopause which can cause unbalanced levels of estrogen and progesterone in the body leading to the tenderness of the breast.

2. Fatty Foods

Studies have shown that animal fat can be a leading factor in increased breast soreness. Animal fat can be a cause of a lot of health issues such as hormonal changes.

It’s not quite clear why this causes breast pain before or after a menstrual cycle. Be cautious of your diet if you consume animal meat and experience breast pain after the menstrual cycle.

3. Stress

Stress can pose health risks like physical pain and ailment. Breast pain is a common occurrence if you’re under a significant amount of stress. Stress can cause hormonal changes and affect your health.

4. Caffeine and Methylxanthine

Consumption of caffeine can cause the blood vessels in the body to dilate and cause breast tenderness after the period.

These two components together cause a vasodilating action which can lead to distention and pain in the breast.

5. Dairy Products

Similar to fatty foods, dairy is not the most clearly defined cause of breast pain. However, some experts claim that women who are allergic to dairy experience breast pain or sore breasts after periods.

Be cautious of what you eat and try eliminating dairy from your diet to improve your health and limit pain in breasts after the period.

6. Birth Control Pills

Birth control pills can cause sensitivity around the breast area and sore breasts after the period. Some birth control pills have additives which cause odd reactions in the body such as pain around the breast.

It’s unlikely that the pain will specifically be caused by birth control pills so be sure to monitor your other symptoms in order to reduce the pain.

7. Radiating Pain from the Chest Wall

Chest wall pain can be misdiagnosed as breast pain. Women may consider radiating pain from the chest wall, occurring under the breast, as breast pain.

The cause of chest wall pain can be a bony chest or muscular issues. Inflammation of the joints of the chest wall, also called costochondritis, can also be mistaken for breast tenderness.

8. Shingles

A painful rash caused by a viral infection can lead to several other symptoms. Breast pain is possible if shingles develop around your breast.

Be cautious if this is at the time of your period. It is always best to seek treatment for shingles as soon as possible and minimize symptoms before they worsen.

9. Mastitis

Inflammation of the breast tissues can also cause breast pain after the menstrual cycle. Mastitis can make the breasts painful, inflamed and cause breast soreness.

Nursing mothers need to be more concerned with mastitis, however stress and fatigue can also increase the susceptibility of the condition.

10. Salty Foods

Water retention throughout the body can cause abnormal reactions in your muscle tissue. Salty foods cause water retention and strain; breast tissues become strained leading to pain in abnormal areas.

Limit your salt intake and make improvements to your lifestyle to improve health and eliminate breast pain.

Treatment for Sore Breasts after Period

Sore breast after the periods is treatable, and there are several natural remedies which you can try at home. We have outlined a few below:

1. Wear Proper Support

Too much pressure on the breasts while exercising can cause discomfort and symptoms such as sore breasts after the period.

A proper-fitting bra can make a difference and relieve you from breast pain. If you wear a sports bra, especially when exercising, you can limit the irritation and stress around the breasts.

2. Oil or Vitamin E

Applying primrose oil or taking vitamin E supplements can help to reduce pain and inflammation around the breast. It aids in the body’s defense against stress.

Inflammation can cause a ton of abnormal bodily reactions which can be prevented if dealt sooner.

3. Pain Medication

Pain medication such as ibuprofen can be used in order to relieve sore breasts after periods. Be sure not to exceed the daily prescribed amount. Pain medications should be used only for relief if the pain is unbearable.

4. Contraception Medicines

Check for contraception medicines or other pills which affect your hormones.

Medications can cause a lot of hormonal imbalances. You should discuss with your doctor about changing the medications to reduce breast pain after the period.

When to See Your Doctor?

Breast pain must be taken seriously. When it relates to a time near or around pregnancy please see your doctor immediately.

If you experience breast pain before, during, or after your period it is important to assess your symptoms and see a doctor.

When you notice any discharge from the nipples, lumps associated with pain around the breast, unexplainable pain in the breast, or the possibility of infection consult the doctor immediately.

Read Next:

Kelley, J., “7 Possible Causes of Sore Breasts After Period You Should Know,” Care Happiness web site;, last accessed November 08, 2017.
Vivian, “What Causes Breasts Sore and Hurt After the Period?” Enkimd web site, February 9, 2017;
“Sore Breast After the Period: Is It Normal?”,Med-Health web site;, last accessed November 08, 2017.

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