Latest News

June 24

When Bigger Is Not Better – The Health Issues Associated With Big Breasts

We all, whether we like it or not, live in an age where the image of the human form, both male and female, is greatly distorted and there is great pressure to have a ‘perfect’ body, whatever that means or is.

Is it fair to say that this pressure has been prevalent for females for longer than it has for males though we have perhaps, or at least I would hope, now passed the craze for surgically enhanced over-sized breasts.  However, this links into but isn’t necessarily the purpose of this blog. Whether natural or artificial, large breasts can actually cause a number of painful and debilitating health conditions as well as the unwanted attention they bring with them.

Problems with naturally large breasts, can in some instances be alleviated by losing weight as the increase in size can sometimes be directly linked to the increase in waist and hip size but that can be easier said than done when you’re battling against conditions such as:-

  • Back, shoulder and neck pain caused by poor posture because of the weight of the breasts.
  • Shortness of breath – again linked to weight.
  • Discomfort from bra straps cutting into shoulders.
  • Rashes and skin infections under the breast due to sweat/heat build up.
  • Limited endurance and mobility due to weight of breasts and size making an active lifestyle and taking part in sports difficult.
  • Migraines have been linked to large breast size as well as numbness in fingers and arms.

Other factors can also affect confidence and cause a low mood:-

  • Nothing fits properly (other than the purple velour housecoat in your nan’s catalogue).
  • Getting a nice, well fitting bra that’s comfortable and looks pretty and does not look like a parachute! And something other than a sports bra would be nice.
  • Staring and unwanted attention (the ‘I’m up here’ moments), which can come from both men and women. Please, STOP!  And the ‘I wish I had boobs like yours’ comments, if they only knew…

Large Breasts can cause neck and shoulder pain

The NHS has always seemed to be reluctant to offer breast reductions as they are a complex operation compared to enlargement. I’m not going to get into the injustice of it!  However, there are certain things that you can do if you do have large breasts to help improve your health before you start your mission of convincing your GP/ Specialist that a surgical reduction is required:

  • Firstly, get a well fitted, suitable, fit for purpose bra!  (See our blog on the Importance of a Well Fitted Bra, link is at the end of this blog). We love Butterfly Bras in Coventry City Centre (link again is at the end of the blog). There’s an excellent fitting service here, and ladies, please don’t be shy, get a proper fitting done. Don’t guess your size and don’t sacrifice fit and comfort for prettiness but there is a much better selection out there these days!  For sports/activity, a good sports bra is an absolute must – many brands, such as Shock Absorber do designs specifically for larger breasts.
  • Secondly, get some physio!  Keep the pain and muscles spasms and headaches under control and get advice on your posture too. We can give you some exercises to do in the comfort of your own home too to strengthen your muscles.
  • Thirdly, if you are overweight (bear in mind, some women may be tiny framed but still have large breasts), start making some changes to your diet and make healthier choices, less alcohol, less sugar, less refined carbs, you know the score. Alongside this, start some gentle walking and gradually build up distance and speed and think about your posture as you’re doing it.
  • Fourthly, try Pilates and/or yoga, both are great for increasing your core strength and posture. Granted some exercises you need to adapt a little due to your natural ‘obstruction’ but it’s a great way to make new friends, have a giggle, improve your confidence and your body at the same time! If you’re feeling a bit shy and unconfident, we offer 1-2-1 Pilates sessions with a physiotherapist (see below for details).
  • Lastly, I can’t do anything about clothes not fitting properly but when there is one of those ‘I’m up here’ moments, speak up and let who ever know that there attention is unwelcome and embarrass them a bit and they might think twice about doing it again!

A poor fitting bra can amplify problems with large breasts

I realise that for some women, even this simple four step plan may not be viable, in which case, it may that a surgical breast reduction may be required but prepared to be persistent to get your point across and the need for you to be physically able to regain an active lifestyle.

Likewise, if you’re considering an enlargement, please consider the facts in this blog and if the enlargement is for you or for someone else.