This blog is by people with breasts, for people with breasts. This blog is inclusive of all people with breasts, regardless of gender. It celebrates the beautiful diversity of breasts, of all sizes, shapes, colours, ages and races. Breasts are such an important and integral part of what makes us feel beautiful and sexual. By showing how all breasts are different, and uniquely special, we will be able to challenge the beliefs around what makes breasts beautiful. There is no single standard for breast beauty! By sharing photos we are demonstrating how every breast is different, and in turn, we will be able to help people with breasts feel better about themselves, improve self-esteem, and show that yes, you are normal.
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I’m not an expert and not qualified to give a medical opinion, and I always recommend that people seek advice from a doctor. I don’t experience this sort of pain, so can’t imagine what it’s like for you.
From the reading that I’ve done on the subject it seems like there’s a wide range of opinions about whether breasts are the cause of back, neck and shoulder pain. Some doctors say that it’s related to posture, and that changing how you stand, sit and use your back muscles will fix the problem. If you can hold your breasts up with your hands and it helps to take the pain away then there may be something in that.
Researchers in Turkey [Findikcioglu K, Findikcioglu F, Ozmen S, et al. "The impact of breast size on the vertebral column: a radiologic study"] found that large breasts can cause upper back pain by altering the curvature of the spine. They noted that women with breast cups size D and above tended to have greater curvatures of the spine than small-breasted women. They also found that breast size has an important impact on posture.
Poor posture could also be related to attitude towards your breasts. Many people of any breast size feel uncomfortable with them and adopt a posture that tries to hide or minimise them, by slouching or slumping, rolling the shoulders forward with the chest sunken behind them, trying to hide your breasts from the world. This shy posture with the shoulders rounded forward causes the neck and head to thrust forward like a turtle. This turtle-like posture strains the neck and back and cause problems.
Conversely if you like your breasts, and if you’re confident with them and hold your girls out for the world to see, it tends to hold your back in a more correct posture with the spine well aligned.
However there is a clear connection between bust size, and more importantly the weight of the breasts, and pain. The weight on the front of your chest changes your centre of gravity. Supportive muscles can get fatigued, especially the trapezius muscles and their related muscles, and can lead to stretching the ligaments of the neck and upper back.
Bras are also a big factor here, and if you’re wearing an ill-fitting bra it won’t be helping. A well fitting bra supports like a shelf from below, not hanging on the shoulders from above. If you find that your bra straps cut into your shoulders, that’s a problem, especially if you wear the same bra (or style of bra) all the time, cutting into the same spot. Varying bra brands and mixing up the position where the bra strap crosses your shoulders is a good idea. I do realise that finding bras that fit isn’t always that easy, and getting more than one type could be a challenge.
Researcher Ryan EL. in "Breast weight and industrial fatigue" found that the bra straps at your back can act as pulleys over the shoulders, doubling the total downward pull on both shoulders. This is especially so with bras that try to hold up the breasts higher on the chest.
In the 2012 study “Relationship Between Brassiere Cup Size and Shoulder-Neck Pain in Women" [Oo, Wang, Sakakibara and Kasai] it showed that there was a significant positive correlation between shoulder-neck pain and large bra cup size .
But neck, shoulder and back pain, along with headaches, migraine etc can be caused by a number of other non breast-related problems, so my advice is to see your doctor and work out what the cause of the problem is. And yes, it may very well be that a breast reduction is a possible solution.
I wish you the best of luck.
Breasts can continue to grow into your early 20s so you never know. But really, does it matter? Smaller breasts are amazingly beautiful, and just as attractive and desirable as larger ones - but without the neck and back pain and ridiculous slut-shaming that often plagues your big-boobed peers. And if you’re really lucky you won’t have to wear a bra (really nobody needs to wear one). So stop worrying, no matter the size of your breasts you’re awesome.
My pleasure. Emma :)
That’s not surprising at all that sizes can seem so different, though from a B to a DD sounds unusual in my untrained opinion. I’d say that you just have an unrealistic idea of what cup sizes look like, and it’s due to a common misconception about what common bra sizing means.
A bra’s cup size is relative to its band size. To work out the actual size of a bra cup, the band size needs to be taken into consideration. Understanding how band size is related to cup size will help you to choose the right sizes to try on.
For example, bras that are sizes 32B and a 34B have different cup sizes, even though the letters are the same. Bras that are sizes 34B and 32C will have the same, or very similar cup sizes, even though the letters are different.
Going down one band size, but up one cup size, will keep the cup sizes exactly the same, and they will have a similar fit, even though the letter sizes are different. The reverse is also true: go up a band size, and down a cup size, and the cup sizes will stay the same.
The difference in cup size from one letter is easy to remember because it’s always 1 inch. This rule only applies when the band size is the same.
Consecutive cup sizes are always 1 inch apart. It doesn’t matter if you’re comparing a 32A with a 32B, or a 36C and a 36D, the difference between both sets of consecutive cup sizes is the same, 1 inch.
Every bra is constructed differently, with a varying cuts, styles and with different fabrics, so no two will ever fit exactly the same. It doesn’t matter what the size on the tag says.
It would be erally surprising if your bra size didn’t change from one style and brand to the next.
And it’s always a good idea to get yourself profesionally fitted, at least once a year, but if you’re still developing, then maybe twice a year or even every time you buy a new bra. Upwards of 80% of people with breasts get it wrong when it comes to bras and wear the wrong size. That can lead to anything from having an obviously ill-fitting bra with boobs spilling out, bunched up, too high, too low etc, all the way through to health problems like increased back and neck pain. So get your girls professionally fitted, ok?