Author Topic: What should I do if one of my daughter’s breasts is bigger than the other?  (Read 455 times)

Offline Goribe

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Breast  buds  are  tender, raised  bumps  that  appear directly  under  a  girl’s  nipples. It’s  not  unusual  for breast buds to appear on just one side first. As a result, there have been many frantic but unnecessary trips to the doctor when a lump has suddenly appeared under a single nipple of a young girl.

Similarly, a  mother  can  understandably  become concerned  when  one  side  of  her  daughter’s  chest  is noticeably  larger  than  the  other. (For  reasons  that  are not  entirely  understood, this  usually  occurs  on  a  girl’s left side.) This is not uncommon. Approximately 25% of  adolescent  girls  experience  breast  asymmetry  that persists into adulthood. Later in life, corrective measures  can  be  taken  to “even  out” this  difference  in  the size  of  a  woman’s  breasts. (However, the  difference between each breast is typically not that noticeable.)

What are signs of breast problems in my daughter?

Once  your  daughter  develops  breast  buds, she  may experience  nipple  discharge. This  is  usually  caused  by irritation to the area, or by an elevated level of the hormone prolactin. Increased hormone levels may be the result  of  medications  your  daughter  is  taking  or  by  a growth  on  her  pituitary  gland. Therefore, if  your daughter experiences nipple discharge, you should take her to your pediatrician to be evaluated.

Your  daughter  may  also  develop  a  mass  in  her  breast, even  at  a  young  age. Thankfully, the  vast  majority  of these  growths  are  completely  benign. Although  a  trip to the doctor’s office is necessary to evaluate the mass, biopsies of the area are greatly frowned-upon by doctors because of the risk of damaging a girl’s breast bud. In almost  all  instances, the  masses  resolve  themselves, remain  without  causing  any  problems, or  disappear with the use of antibiotics.

One  thing  you  can  feel  good  about  is  the  fact  that breast  cancer is  extremely  rare  in  adolescents. In  fact, studies show that from 1998 to 2002, the incidence of breast cancer in females below the age of 20 was 0 cases for every 100,000 people. That’s right; zero cases. Now, that doesn’t mean it never happens, but it’s not some- thing that you should spend your time worrying about.

What can my daughter do to relieve breast pain?

Unfortunately, breast pain or discomfort is common in adolescent girls. It usually happens in cycles and occurs just  before  she  menstruates. Research  has  shown  that this pain can be increased if a girl drinks anything with caffeine  in  it, whether  it’s  coffee, soda, or  an  energy drink. (And, as  a  further  incentive  not  to  use  cigarettes, you should let your daughter know that smoking also tends to increase breast pain.)

A breast surgeon I know tells his patients who experience breast pain to avoid caffeinated products, chocolate, and peanuts; to use over-the-counter medications such as acetaminophen and ibuprofen as needed; and to  wear  only  well-fitted, supportive  bras. That’s  good advice for all of us women. (Except for the “no chocolate” part, of course.)