Breast nipple problems

Women’s health & fitness guide

There can be many different problems associated with the woman’s nipple with most of them being harmless, such as discharge, inverted nipples and soreness or itching from eczema. While most of the problems are harmless, however some could be one of the first signs that something is amiss

Nipple discharge

You should always check out any discharge from your nipples as this can be a sign of cancer, however there are other reasons for the discharge too, one of the first things your doctor will ask is if you could be pregnant as this can often cause a light fluid discharge from the nipples. You should also determine if the discharge is coming from just one pore or several, if the discharge is coming from several then it is highly unlikely that it is anything serious.

Inverted nipples

The majority of women’s nipples stick out usually between 5 and 10 mm and become wider, longer and erect when they are sexually aroused. However sometimes nipples can be inverted or flat, flat nipples can become erect when aroused or when breast feeding. Sometimes it is just one nipple which is inverted or it may be both of the, if you have always had inverted nipples then this is nothing to worry about, however should one or more nipples suddenly become inverted then it could be a sign of cancer.

Breastfeeding with inverted nipples

If your nipples become erect when you are sexually aroused then it probably wont be a problem for you to breast feed as the nipple will become erect when the baby suckles on it. If this is the case then you can help by wrapping ice in a towel and placing this over the nipple before you are ready to breastfeed.

Hairy nipples

Dark hairs around the nipple are quite common and can simply be removed using tweezers, however due to the nipples and area around them being sensitive this can cause soreness, you can lift the hair with the tweezers then gently snip it to avoid soreness and irritation.

Itchy or scaly nipples

If you have problems with itchy, scaly or cracked nipples then you could be suffering from eczema, this condition will usually affect both nipples though you can just have it one, more probably it will also affect the surrounding area of your nipple and they can become very sore.

Your doctor will prescribe a steroid cream to use to clear up the eczema and you should try to avoid scratching. Only very occasionally will eczema be a sign of some underlying disease such as cancer but if you only have it on one nipple then it is worth getting it checked out.

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