Your Nipples Hurt? This Could Be Behind It

Both women and men may experience pain in the nipples. Women usually also suffer from swollen or painful breasts in the course of this. Especially during pregnancy or breastfeeding, many expectant mothers have very sensitive nipples.

Changes in hormone levels are often to blame. However, sometimes painful nipples also occur in women in the second half of their menstrual cycle. In addition, even young girls in their puberty have the problem that their nipples hurt.

Here you can find out what can be behind painful nipples.

When The Nipples Hurt, The Causes Are Often Harmless

If you suffer from breast pain during pregnancy or while breastfeeding, it may be due to the fact that the mammary glands are fully developed during this time and thus exert a certain pressure on the breasts or nipples.

If necessary, painful breasts can also be caused by milk stasis. This is the case, for example, if you want to start breastfeeding your baby again after a long break from breastfeeding.

In the meantime, make sure that you hold your little bundle of joy properly against your breasts. If this is not the case, you may also experience breast pain during breastfeeding.

If you are not pregnant and still experience sensitive nipples or painful breasts, cysts may be the cause. Cysts are cavities filled with a certain fluid that are located in the glands of the breasts.

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Although such cysts are usually harmless, it does not hurt if you visit the gynecologist of your confidence. Just to be on the safe side. This article shows you what you should know if your nipples hurt and what you can do about it:

When Nipples Hurt, Sometimes You Need To Be Careful

Harmless cysts in the nipples are usually very easy to treat. However, experience has shown that a fibroadenoma can also be a trigger for the nipples to hurt.

A fibroadenoma is a benign type of tumor that can occur in many women. It sometimes causes severe breast pain – as does malignant breast cancer at an advanced stage.

When The Nipples Hurt In Men

Breast pain can occur in women as well as in men. Young men often experience sensitive nipples or painful breasts during puberty.

It is also conceivable from about the middle of their lives that the nipples hurt. Those who have reached the age of 50 usually go through a special hormonal phase, but this is only of short duration. Due to this, temporary breast augmentation results, which can be associated with breast pain.


It is even possible for men to develop breast cancer.


Certainly, the risk of breast cancer in men is much lower than in women. This is simply due to the completely different nature as well as the complex hormonal processes that take place in the female breast. Therefore, if the nipples hurt in men, this usually has hardly any significant causes.

When sportswear or a sweaty T-shirt rubs on the nipples, they become sore and ache. To make this rubbing pain go away and allow the nipples to heal, sufferers can put a band-aid over their nipples. This prevents outerwear from continuing to rub over the nipples and allows the sore spots to heal.

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Women’s nipples can also become sore because, for example, they are wearing clothing that is too tight or because their bra is ill-fitting. In addition, synthetic materials or dyes in textiles have a negative effect on the skin or nipples. They react irritated and start to hurt.

Sensitive Nipples During Pregnancy

Even before a woman even knows she is pregnant, breast pain can become noticeable. In addition, they sometimes notice that their breasts are slightly swollen and also very irritable.

So, in fact, it can be a first sign of pregnancy if the nipples hurt. This is because in the early stages, the breasts are usually extremely sensitive and quickly become sore. The breasts of many pregnant women are now even so sensitive that they even find it highly uncomfortable to wear a nightgown.


Are you also one of those sensitive women whose nipples hurt when light fabrics rub over them? Then you can wear maternity pajamas. They contain soft and especially comfortable bras that ensure that everything fits perfectly.

From about the 4th month of pregnancy, the sensitivity in the breasts will certainly decrease. This is because at this stage the rising hormone levels will have stabilized. At the same time, the female body will also have become accustomed to the “new circumstances” and will react to external and internal influences in a more or less normal way again.

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Why Do Pregnant Women Have Sensitive Nipples?

Especially in the early stages of pregnancy, hormone activity is in full swing. Your body is preparing for pregnancy at this stage and accordingly produces huge amounts of progesterone and estrogen.

These are the hormones that are also “produced” by the body before each menstrual period. Due to the greatly increased hormone activity, you now feel a stronger sensitivity in the breasts. The feeling of tension in the breasts is also more noticeable now than when you still had your period.

With each surge of hormones, your breasts begin to grow. In the course of this, more layers of fat form. The mammary glands also develop now and become larger. Mother Nature is therefore gradually preparing your body so that you can later optimally supply your child with food or give it the breast. In this way, moreover, the blood flow in the breasts is increased.


The enlargement of the bust during the entire pregnancy by up to two cup sizes is nothing unusual. It is therefore absolutely normal for the nipples to ache as a result of this growth and in view of the strong hormonal activity.

Many women usually only experience breast pain as relatively unpleasant and annoying during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. Especially when it is a woman’s first pregnancy, the physical changes are very unfamiliar and even frighten many expectant mothers.

The Nipples Hurt – Even During Sex

When the nipples hurt, many women have a completely altered sensation of pleasure or sex during pregnancy. The blood flow to their breasts goes “full blast”, they feel a throbbing and tingling sensation, and the nipples react extremely to gentle touch.

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Perhaps you, too, are one of those women who now experience a very special pleasure during lovemaking with your partner. From the 4th month of pregnancy, however, this increased pleasure could change.

Any stimulus that is perceived as unpleasant, possible pain in the breast, or even discomfort during sex will become a thing of the past again for most women by the second or last third of pregnancy at the latest.

The Nipples Hurt – What You Can Do About It

It is possible to do something about nipple pain. You are well-advised to take good care of your nipples and to wear small nursing caps. A well-fitting bra also prevents friction and thus irritation of the breasts.

Some women find painful nipples particularly annoying. If this is also the case for you, you can ask your gynecologist for advice. Depending on your physical constitution and pain sensation, he or she will prescribe a nourishing ointment to alleviate the irritation caused by external influences.

You Should Keep This In Mind

The fact that the nipples might hurt cannot be ruled out during breastfeeding. The suction force that your baby’s little mouth exerts on your nipples is perceived by many breastfeeding mothers as quite painful at first.

However, many women get used to it. According to experts, however, the sensation of irritation in most cases promotes the bond between mother and child. In this respect, it can certainly be something wonderful when the nipples hurt.


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