Wearing an ill-fitting bra is not just uncomfortable, it can be dangerous to your health. Here are some problems you can avoid if you wear the right bra.
50% of women report feeling breast pain on a regular basis. While many worry that the pain might mean something more, most women don’t realize that the solution might be simple: wearing a correctly-fitting bra.
The pain might easily be caused by the bra being too tight, in which case the breasts are constricted beyond what is healthy. Or, the pain might come from the bra being too loose or too large. In this case, the breast tissue doesn’t get enough support and sags, causing stretch marks on our skin.
Blocked lymph nodes
Speaking of too-tight bras and breast pain, another dangerous effect of a badly-fitting bra is blocked lymph nodes. On a normal day, our lymphatic system helps healthy lymph fluid move through our breasts.
But when we wear bras that are too tight for us, which press too heavily on our breasts, this lymphatic system is blocked. The lymph nodes suffer from constricted buildup of fluid, which can in turn lead to inflammation, swelling, and a toxin buildup. It is important to find the best fitting bra for you.
Abrasions or scarring
When we hit puberty, our chest area becomes tender and painful. Our breasts also grow at an unusual rate before stabilizing.
And, as we all know, there actually is no such thing as a stable breast size. Every month, it changes and adjusts to our cycle and lifestyle changes, such as pregnancy.
As a result, many women consider uncomfortable or tight bras a matter of course. However, if you notice that the edges of the straps or the underwire are causing abrasions on your skin or even scarring, your bra is already too tight for you. The scars and skin abrasions might also remain permanently.
Rashes and hives
One product of a badly fitting bra is unhealthy breast skin. If the cup size isn’t correct, or we choose the wrong underwire bras, our skin might be prone to rashes and hives. This especially happens when our bras are too loose.
When our breasts move around too much, there is more friction than normal between the material and our skin. The space also means particles can get between the cloth and your skin, making you more prone to irritations and infections.
Tightness of breath
I’m sure you’ve breathed a sigh of relief when you came home and unhooked your bra. I’m sure you felt your ribs expanding, the oxygen rushing to every corner of your lungs. Unfortunately, that feeling of great relief is evidence that you just might have an ill-fitting bra.
What often happens here is that the too-tight band is constricting your rib cage. When your ribs are constricted, your lungs don’t have room to expand, and hence you have tightness of breath.
While it may feel “normal” while you have a bra on, the truth is that it’s constricting your oxygen flow. This can lead to slower healing of the body, dizziness and sleepiness, and heightened stress levels.
Pinched shoulder nerves
When our bra straps are too tight and too thin for our breast size and chest width, we run the risk of having pinched shoulder nerves. Pinched nerves happen when the constriction moves our muscles and other internal tissues in such a way that they press against the larger nerves.
Pinched nerves often cause a lingering, very confusing pain that is hard to relieve because it’s not just a sore muscle. The worst cases of pinched nerves need surgery to release the constriction, or else the pain becomes chronic and continuous.
Shoulder and back pain
Shoulder and back pain is also something that gets taken for granted because we got so used to our bras being uncomfortable. However, it is even more evidence that we have an ill-fitting bra, and that it is negatively affecting our health.
Often, shoulder pain means our bras are too loose. We’re not getting enough support for our breasts, so our shoulders are weighed down and our posture suffers as a result.
Back pain, on the other hand, often means that the band might be too tight. It might also be an extension of the shoulder pain, as the back muscles work to take on some of the weight.
Toxin build up
One of the most dangerous effects of an ill-fitting bra is the toxin buildup in the breasts. A tight bra, especially, causes all sorts of blocks to happen in the lymphatic system and in the blood flow.
Our bodies are constantly moving fluids around, using them to cleanse our bodies of toxins and other dangerous substances. Tight bras press against blood and lymph vessels, constricting our natural cleansing system.
When we shift to properly fitting bras, we get to enjoy the support of the bra without having to tighten the band or the straps. The right kind of bra sits snug on the ribs, firmly around the breasts, and flat on the shoulders. Wearing it should feel as straightforward as our favorite “just right” t-shirt.
What’s the verdict?
Before worrying about the possible causes of breast pain that you have, look into your bra sizing first. You might simply have missed out on double-checking the size. Adjust the straps, make them wider if you have a hard time with the support.
Check which hooks your bra is at, to know how much the bra may have stretched itself out. But most importantly, don’t let these dangerous health effects continue until you have more to worry about than a bra change.