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Breast Development

A Rite of Passage

Typical of a young girl with budding breast. the white area is due to wearing a tiny bikini.

Typical of a young girl with budding breast. the white area is due to wearing a tiny bikini.

For girls who want to grow up, it can be an exciting time when breasts finally start growing, but it can also be an anxious time, with lots of worries… like how big will they get, will they look good, and is anything wrong with mine? An early onset of breast development can cause some confusion not only for a girl, but her family and friends as her body begins to take on the appearance of someone several years older.

With the growth of breasts and menstruation, an intellectual and emotional maturing must also take place as she prepares to take on new role in life.

It is also common for girls to begin wearing a training bra; this has nothing to do with breast care or health, it is training for a life in bondage. There is no proof that a bra does any good at all, it's simply a social contrivance and something to spend money on.

bud2

Typical early development and breasts may not increase in size until pregnancy

Physiology

Breast growth occurs as the mammary glands grow in size and volume, this growth is a stage of puberty marking a girls transition toward womanhood which most commonly commences between age 10 and 14.

Genetics play a strong role and girls may anticipate how their breasts may develop by knowing details of their mothers development as well as that other women in the family.  Family references may also indicate the final size and appearance of growing breasts.

But due to diet, lifestyle, genetics, pollutants and other sociological factors,  breast growth and development can begin at any age with girls as young as age 6 or 7 developing breasts, a fact attributed to environmental oestrogens and this is increasingly being seen as normal.

There is no rule as to when breasts should or should not develop, but typically girls will develop in a similar way as their mothers (and other women in the family) give or take a year.  Then on average, it's about two years from the time a girl first begins breast development to the time that she has her first period.

Breast growth is determined during prenatal development and for a girl in the breast-development stage of puberty, female sex hormones (principally oestrogens) promote the sprouting, growth, and development of the breasts as the mammary glands grow inside.

But breast growth can be delayed and may not may not occur until the late teens, and rarely a woman may not develop what are considered proper breasts until pregnant.

Developmental stages

stretchmarks

Stretch marks on the breasts can curve brought many reasons, they can occur during puberty when the breasts are growing too rapidly for the skin to expand all they can stretch as the breast is filling with milk prior to lactation.

Breast growth begins with tender breast buds which are usually seen as the first sign of puberty.  The timing is determined by one's own inner biology as a girl's body starts producing high levels of female hormones.

Breasts go through stages of growth until full maturity is reached which is often between age 17 to 20.

  1. The nipples begin to raise out and become more sensitive.
  2. There is often some discomfort and itching as the skin stretches. This can be relieved by regular self massage using good quality massage oils high in vitamin E.
  3. Breast buds begin developing as the first fat, milk glands and breast tissues grow to cause the breast bud to raise the nipple out from the chest. The areola also gets wider.
  4. Developing breasts sometimes are of unequal size, and usually the left breast is slightly larger. This  asymmetry is transitory and statistically normal to female physical and sexual development, but it can remain permanent. Massaging the breasts and especially a smaller breast with a growth enhancer may facilitate evenness.
  5. The breasts, areola and nipples become larger taking on a more adult shape, but they are still smaller than they will be when you are an adult.
  6. Stretch marks are common as the skin stretches to accommodate the growing glands inside. This can be helped by regular daily massage with vitamin E oil, or a high quality oil rich in vitamin E and omega 3 essential fatty acids.
  7. The breasts are often “pointy” as the areola and nipples continue to enlarge forming a separate little mound on the breast. Many girls skip this stage.
  8. The adult stage where the breasts are fully developed but some girls breasts may continue to grow beyond this stage.
old

Typical breasts of a woman age 40, has three children and always wore a bra.

These stages are general to many girls, but many will experience a different growth pattern and the final size of a girl's breasts is generally determined by heredity and can range from very small (A) to very full (EE).

Some girls have been known to have developed to a D cup by age ten or eleven which forces then to grow up more quickly due as much to social pressures as physical.

Any growth or significant changes beyond this age may be affected by weight gain or loss, pregnancy and lactation, diet, self care and exercise.

Later changes 

Breasts will continue to change a little with lifestyle and over time most women experience some sagging caused by many factors including pregnancy and lactation, poor posture, weakening of the skin, weakening of the supportive muscles and ligaments, wearing the wrong bra.

examples

A range of possibilities, click for a larger image.

Excessive breast growth can occur with weight gain and to help prevent sag, perform regular self care massage along with maintaining a good diet, exercising, avoiding wearing a bra as much as possible and avoiding poison skin care products.

Problems encountered

  • New breast tissues can be more sensitive giving rise to new physical sensations from pain to pleasure.
  • Laying and sleeping face down may become uncomfortable.
  • Boobs can sweat meaning sweat stains on clothing as well as a little BO and annoyance. In this case, going topless or wearing low cut tops are more ideal as they let your boobs breathe but then people look.
    • People looking - most people look but it's impolite to stare, so girls must learn and adapt to being looked at and sometimes stared at. Most people look in admiration as we have an inbuilt appreciation of the female body. It's beautiful and the source of all life.
  • Wearing a bra is a social expectation with no advantages for breast health. Finding the right size is difficult, then they restrict circulation and most women are relieved to take them off after a day of wearing one.
  • Breasts bounce and there's no way to avoid that, even with the best sports bra, so you just have to get used to that or become a vegetable.
  • Finding clothes, avoiding tops that button up the front, worrying that breast will sill out when leaning down, how much cleavage to display and other things need to be considered, but remember that breasts are primarily to nurture babies, so big or small, love your breasts.

References:
Family education
Cheryl's Breast talk

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