The Impact of Gynecomastia
Gynecomastia, or man-boobs, is the enlarging or swelling of breast tissue in boys and men. It is most often caused by a hormonal imbalance between estrogen and testosterone and can present itself in one or both breasts. Gynecomastia can develop at any age, however, most commonly occurs during puberty.
Although it is not viewed as a serious problem, it can cause physical discomfort through tenderness, painful lumps behind the nipple and swelling. The most damaging part of gynecomastia, however, is the emotional strain it places on individuals. Shame, embarrassment and confidence issues are often felt by those with gynecomastia.
Why Does it Occur?
As noted, gynecomastia most often occurs during puberty, wherein both androgens and estrogens flood the body creating the ideal environment for breast tissue to spawn. In cases of post-pubertal gynecomastia development, however, there are many potential causes, some of these include:
Being overweight – too much excess fat can result in higher levels of estrogen.
Age – as men age, testosterone levels lower which can lead to a hormonal imbalance.
Disease – many diseases are known to disrupt the normal production of hormones and cause the development of breast tissue in men.
Drugs – an array of medications and illicit drugs have the potential to cause gynecomastia, including anabolic steroids, heroin and marijuana.
The Negative Affects of Gynecomastia
A study conducted by Williams & Wilkins (2013) aimed to test the psychological impact of gynecomastia in adolescents with mild-moderate gynecomastia. The authors found that patients with gynecomastia scored lower on standard quality of life assessments, specifically in areas of general health, self-esteem, social functioning and mental health.
Furthermore, some studies have suggested that eating disorders may develop in adolescents with gynecomastia as an obsession grows towards their weight and image.
Whilst gynecomastia isn’t a direct problem in itself, the mental health issues which are attached to it, coupled with the endless struggle to hide their ailment can have serious consequences.
A significant consequence that man-boob sufferers face in their quest to hide their chest is poor posture. Rolling their shoulders forward and arching their spine in an attempt to take away the accentuation of their curvy chest can lead to a life time of detrimental postural effects. Directly, their poor posture can cause neck pain and back pain whilst the misalignment of their spine can lead to aches, pains and greater skeletal problems throughout the body.
How Gynecomastia Compression Vests Can Help
A well fitted, discreet and lightweight gynecomastia specific compression vest can do wonders for the confidence of individuals suffering from man-boobs. Gynecomastia vests offer the ability for wearers to do the seemingly simple act of straightening their posture, an action which creates confidence and exudes confidence in itself.
A comfortable gynecomastia vest or gynecomastia shirt can be worn all day without feeling restrictive, allowing sufferers of man-boobs to wear clothes they wouldn’t have dreamed of dressing in before utilising compression wear. Plain t-shirts, slim fitting shirts and clingy fabrics are all available to choose from, sufferers can re-invent themselves and their wardrobes through gynecomastia vests.