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A sagging breast is usually caused by a loss of elasticity in the skin and connective tissue. The main reasons for sagging breasts are the natural aging process, previous pregnancy and the natural nature (shape and size) of the breast. The stability of the breast can be strengthened with simple means. In this article we present different exercises and treatments.
Sagging chest responsible for mental suffering
The social sense of beauty conveys a physical ideal to women and men that often does not correspond to their own body reality. The female breast is particularly important. According to the general ideal of beauty, a woman's breast should be firm, large and firm. Since these ideal values either increase or decrease self-esteem through the influence of a formative environment, a “beautiful breast” is often a decisive factor in the well-being of the soul.
Hanging breasts represent a massive psychological burden for many women. However, with special exercises and care, the firmness of the skin can be improved. (Image: SENTELLO / fotolia.com)
Many women who have a "sagging breast" show signs of depressive episodes and seek professional help. An entire medical industry has developed and breast cosmetic surgery is almost an everyday procedure today. From a medical point of view, surgery is rarely necessary. Numerous non-surgical treatments can help to promote firmness and thus reduce the “sagging breast” phenomenon.
Anatomy of the female breast
A woman's breast is held by muscles. The large and small chest muscles, which attach to the shoulders and upper arms, are responsible for this. The breast extends from the second to the seventh rib. It itself consists of connective tissue, fat and glandular tissue (mammary gland).
The breast tissue is held on the envelope of the large pectoral muscle by ligaments. For this reason, the condition of the breast depends mainly on the nature of the muscle. If the muscle is pronounced, the breasts are usually taut. From a biological point of view, the breast is used for breastfeeding babies. Breast milk is donated through the mammary glands after childbirth.
Sagging breasts from breastfeeding?
Many mothers fear that the breast will go limp after weaning. For many women, the fear of a sagging breast is crucial for giving their child the bottle and not the breast. However, a study by the US University of Kentucky refuted this very widespread prejudice that persistent practitioners and doctors persist. Instead of the breastfeeding process, the age, BMI and cigarette consumption of the mother are the cause of later hanging breasts, the US researchers write.
Almost 100 American women were examined for the study between 1998 and 2006. All women were pregnant at least once in their life and a good half of the study participants breast-fed for an average of nine months (including weaning). The average age of the participants was 39 years. Factors that were included in the calculation were breast size before and after pregnancy, the BMI, cigarette consumption and the intake of various medicines.
After completing the study, it was found that breast sagging was encouraged with the number of pregnancies, but this effect is not caused by breastfeeding itself. In addition to the number of pregnancies, the biggest cause was the smoking behavior of the woman. "Smoking breaks down a protein in the skin called elastin, which gives youthful skin its elastic appearance and supports the breast [...] so it would make sense that smoking would have an adverse effect on the breasts," said study leader Dr. Brian Rinker from the University of Kentucky.
The less the protein was present, the more a change in the elasticity of the breast was observed. According to this, breastfeeding is unjustifiably associated with hanging breasts. However, pregnancy in itself is actually associated with an increased risk of sagging breasts, the US scientists report. Ultimately, sagging breasts remain a widespread phenomenon after pregnancy.
Sagging chest: what to do?
Basically, the skin and chest sag in the course of a lifetime. Only supportive measures to tighten the skin and connective tissue can slow down the irreversible process somewhat. Various exercises are available to strengthen the elasticity.
In addition, attention should be paid to a balanced and healthy diet. The intake of toxins in the form of smoking should - as already described in the section "Hanging breast by breastfeeding" - be stopped or at least restricted. Because the pollutants contained in tobacco smoke inhibit the production of the structural protein "elastin" according to numerous scientific studies. Among other things, this is responsible for the elasticity of the skin and connective tissue. The inhibition of the protein is not only noticeable on the breast, but on the skin all over the body. The aging process of the skin is accelerated.
Exercises against sagging chest
The most effective exercises for firming the chest are pushups and chest presses. The chest press trains the lower chest muscle. The push-ups are used to train the upper and lower chest muscles as well as the muscles on the upper arms and shoulders.
- Stand up straight
- The legs are placed parallel to the width of the hips
- Now tighten your stomach and press the palms together below your chest
- The elbows point outwards and the fingertips point upwards
- Continue to breathe in and out normally during tension
- Hold this position tense for a good 15 seconds
- Then pause for 15 seconds and tighten again
- Breast presses should be used with at least three repetitions daily
Important: Make sure you breathe normally during tension. Otherwise the muscles are not supplied with enough oxygen, which is counterproductive for the exercise. During the entire exercise, the body position should be straight, buttocks and abdomen should be slightly tense and the feet should be slightly bent.
Another effective exercise are Pushups. The upper chest muscle and the triceps are trained. During the exercise, you lean on your hands and feet. Shoulders, hips, feet and knees form as straight a line as possible.
Important: Do not form a hollow back, but keep a straight back. If the bottom stretches high, the exercise is used incorrectly. In the posture described, the upper body is slowly lowered until the upper arm and forearm form a 90 degree angle.
This position remains for a few seconds before slowly returning to the starting position. Inhale when lowering the upper body and exhale slowly when lifting. In the beginning, most untrained people do few repetitions. Through repeated practice, 15 repetitions and more can be achieved after a short time.
It is important that in principle it is not the speed that matters, but the correctly executed push-ups. Repeat the exercises every two days to give the body time to regenerate.
Natural medicine against sagging breasts
In addition to the typical sports exercises, naturopathic remedies can also be used to avoid sagging breasts. The skin of the chest and cleavage needs special care. Many commercially available creams therefore rely on the power of medicinal plants.
In particular, algae extracts, fatty substances from the olive and avocado as well as extracts from green tea can protect the skin from the harmful effects of UV rays. In addition, the substances are said to work against free radicals. Free radicals accelerate the aging process and are responsible for damage to the body and skin cells.
The supplementary administration of vitamin A is recommended. Older skin in particular requires additional vitamins, since the metabolism slows down as the skin ages. The regular vitamin intake accelerates cell division and the skin can renew itself better. The positive and desired side effect: the wrinkling of the skin is slowed down.
However, since the body can hardly break down vitamin A (carotenes), excess vitamin A is stored in the liver. It is therefore advisable to use appropriate preparations only moderately and in consultation with a trained alternative practitioner or doctor. Better than additional "pills" is the natural intake in the form of suitable foods. Carotenes are found in carrots, mangoes, kale, sweet potatoes and spinach, among others.
Schüssler salts against sagging breasts
Another proven natural remedy for sagging breasts are Schüssler salts. These are biochemical functional agents that optimize the mineral balance by eliminating deficiency states and disorders.
Above all, salt 1 (calcium fluoratum) comes into question. The so-called "salt of the connective tissue" has a supporting effect on the elasticity and strength of tissues and is therefore also valued as a home remedy for cellulite. The salt is available for both internal (e.g. in the form of tablets) and external use (e.g. lotions).
Salt No. 11 (Silicea) is recommended if the skin's elasticity decreases. This is known as “the salt of the connective tissue, skin, hair and nails” and is also often recommended in conventional medicine under the name “silica”. Silicea supports the medical science of Dr. Schüßler after building and firming the connective tissue and ensures healthy and firm skin. Accordingly, it can be used very effectively against sagging breasts and generally as a home remedy for wrinkles.
Peeling helps cell renewal
So that external applications to avoid sagging breasts are successful, it is advisable to exfoliate the skin from time to time. A peeling stimulates cell renewal and the skin experiences more elasticity. Although the skin renews itself approximately every 30 days, something can be helped from middle age onwards. Instead of using chemical products from the trade, you should either use natural cosmetic items or simply prepare them yourself.
For example, oatmeal and grape seed oil can be mixed. The oil cares for the skin and the oatmeal gently exfoliates the breast skin. The mass should be gently massaged in and rinsed off with lukewarm water after a good 15 minutes. (sb, nr)
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Author and source information
This text corresponds to the specifications of the medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical doctors.
Dipl. Social Science Nina Reese, Barbara Schindewolf-Lensch
- Pschyrembel Online: www.pschyrembel.de (access: 02.09.2019), mast optosis
- Friedrich Henke; Otto Lubarsch: Female Genital Organs: Part Two Diseases of the Breast Glands and Uterine Ligaments, Springer, 1933
- Helga Fritsch; Helmut Leonhardt: Taschenatlas Anatomie, Volume 2, Thieme, 2009
- Richard Volk: Lexicon of Cosmetic Practice, Springer, 2013