7 Fascinating Facts about Breasts

Dr. Sacha Obaid, Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon Serving Dallas, Plano, Southlake, and Nearby Fort Worth, Texas

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No other kind of cosmetic surgical procedure is performed as often as breast augmentation. With the option to increase or decrease breast size and lift the breasts to make them perkier, it’s no wonder breast augmentation is a go-to option for many women. If you’re considering breast augmentation, get to know a little more about the subjects of this procedure!

1. A Multitude of Masses

Breasts come in an unlimited array of shapes and sizes. Some are very small, while others grow very large and need heavy-duty support garments. In the U.S., bra size is trending upward. In 2013 the average bra size was a 36C, but these days the average American woman wears a size 40D bra. The largest bra size currently made is a U.S. size 52I. It’s most famously worn by Annie Hawkins-Turner, who holds the record for the world’s largest natural breasts. No matter what size bra you’re wearing, there’s about an 85% chance it’s the wrong size! Wearing a bra that doesn’t fit correctly can cause problems, such as back and neck pain, especially if you have large breasts. Even if you think your bra fits well, having a proper fitting is a great way to ensure you’re wearing the correct size.

2. Permanently Perky

Breasts are not unique to humans—all mammals have mammary glands of one kind or another. For most species, mammary are small and flat and only swell when it’s time for the glands to provide nourishment to an animal’s young. Once the young are grown and no longer need milk, the glands recede to their smaller size. The only exception? Humans! On reaching sexual maturity, human females have full breasts for most of their lives. We do share something with other mammals, though: Women's breasts typically swell during pregnancy, in preparation for milk production. The perky breast shape that most women have when they’re young doesn’t last forever, unfortunately. Fortunately, advancements in surgery make it possible to regain your youthful bust-line after pregnancy and nursing! A breast lift, with or without augmentation, can quickly return your breasts to their pre-pregnancy shape and size.

3. Amazing Asymmetry

Every woman’s breasts are different, and there are even differences in a woman’s own two breasts. Within the same pair of breasts, one is almost always:

  • A little bigger than the other
  • A slightly different shape
  • Positioned slightly differently on the chest

These differences are perfectly normal—in fact, it’s very unusual for a woman’s breasts to have perfect symmetry! facts about breasts

4. The Virtues of Variety

Another reason why there’s so much variety in breast shape is that our bodies change as we:

  • Age
  • Gain or lose weight
  • Improve our fitness
  • Become pregnant

Age, weight, and pregnancy play a big role in how a woman’s breasts look and can influence both their size and their perkiness. For instance, physical exercise that strengthens the pectoral muscles can make the breasts appear larger, fuller, and perkier. On the other hand, as women age, breasts contain more fatty tissue than milk-glands, which makes them more likely to sag. These kinds of changes happen on a cyclical basis too. For instance, in the week before menstruation, a woman’s breasts can grow in size by as much as a full cup measurement! This is important to consider if you’re having a breast augmentation or breast lift, as it may be best to avoid having a consultation in the week before your period is due to start. Physical arousal can also cause a volume increase of up to 25%, as well as making the breasts and nipples more sensitive to touch.

5. Numerous Nipples

Like the breasts themselves, nipples can also vary widely in size and shape. In fact, there are several different types of nipples, including the protruding nipples that most women have. There are also “flat” nipples that only protrude when stimulated, and there are inverted nipples that are similar in shape to an “inny” belly button. In some people, the areola is extra-full, which creates a “puffy” nipple look where the nipples and surrounding areolas stand out from the rest of the breast tissue. There’s also a small amount of variation in terms of the number of nipples a person can have. While most of the population has the normal set of 2, around 1 in 100 men and 1 in 50 women have a third nipple. Just like the standard two-nipple set, the third nipple can be flat, puffy, or inverted too!

6. Food Factories

Most relevant to their biological function, breasts make what some have called the perfect baby food. Breast milk—released from the glandular tissue of a woman’s breasts when her newborn suckles—contains a multitude of essential substances. These include:

  • Vitamins
  • Minerals
  • Enzymes
  • Fats
  • Protein
  • Carbohydrates

Breast milk also contains antibodies produced by the mother’s own immune system, which help protect her infant from disease. Breast milk contains everything a human infant needs to grow, develop, and thrive! Many women who consider breast augmentation are concerned about the possibility that the surgery might leave them unable to breastfeed in the future. While some women do have challenges in breastfeeding after augmentation surgery, most women can breastfeed as normal.

7. Bras for Science!

Breasts are the subject of many kinds of scientific research, but at one university in China, bras are the subject. Within Hong Kong Polytechnic University’s Institute of Textiles and Clothing is a research department created by global lingerie manufacturer Top Form. The subject? The science of building better, more comfortable, and more supportive bras! Considering how you can enhance your set of amazing breasts? Call North Texas Plastic Surgery today for a consultation!