It’s fairly common to experience sore breasts before you get your period. The severity of breast tenderness and nipple sensitivity tends to fluctuate with the menstrual cycle and is often more pronounced in the week leading up to menstruation. Breast tissue is very sensitive to hormonal fluctuations, and levels of the hormones estrogen and progesterone are high in the week before you start your period, which is why they can be so achy. Breast surgical oncologist Dr. Carlie K. Thompson shares several tips to reduce this breast pain so you can get on with your life.
Sore Breasts Before Period: How to Relieve Premenstrual Breast Tenderness
Tips to relieve breast soreness:
- Wear a supportive underwire bra when you're not exercising and a thick, supportive sports bra when you are exercising.
- Limit caffeine consumption. Caffeine can affect how hormones affect your breast tissue, so limiting caffeine consumption in the week leading up to your period could reduce breast tenderness.
- Limit your sodium or salt consumption. The more salt you ingest, the more water your body holds onto, which causes more breast swelling and tenderness.
- Try evening primrose oil or vitamin E. Dr. Thompson says there is anecdotal evidence that taking evening primrose oil and vitamin E supplements can alleviate pre-period breast tenderness.
History of updates
Current version (16 December 2021)
Reviewed by Dr. Carlie Thompson, Breast surgical oncologist and assistant professor, University of California, California, US
Published (23 October 2019)
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