Apart from the common symptoms of fibromyalgia, many fibro patients also suffer another condition called Costochondritis. This causes them pain in the breast and ribcage regions where wearing a bra can be painful and almost impossible. If you suffer from Costochondritis, wearing the right bra can reduce the pain significantly…
What is Costochondritis?
In definition, costochondritis is the inflammation of the cartilage that links the ribs to the breastbone. Much of fibromyalgia pain begins with this pain. It is sudden and causes immense chest pain. Depending on the amount of inflammation a patient experiences, the pain can be mildly irritating or extremely painful. Often, people describe what they go through as burning, stabbing or aching pain. Some even relate the pain to a heart attack.
Symptoms of Costochondritis
Fibromyalgia patients often show symptoms of costochondritis which include:
- Pain in the ribcage and chest which worsens with exercise or any activity.
- Pain when inhaling deeply, sneezing and coughing due to stretching of the inflamed cartilage.
- Pain radiates from the chest to the arms and shoulders and, in this manner, mimics a heart attack.
- Pain is often accompanied by inflammation or redness, a condition known as Tietze’s Syndrome.
Finding the Right Bra for Fibromyalgia and Costochondritis
In this condition, it is a painful hassle to put on any tight clothing which compresses the rib and needless to say an underwire bra. Many women choose not to wear a bra to reduce the pain. However, when needed, it’s best to wear something not-too-tight, in a comfortable fabric, and easy to wear and remove. Here are some tips in finding a right bra:
Bra Fabric Types
When buying a bra, look for:
- something made with smooth, soft and breathable fabric like cotton, silk or satin.
- Seamless bra types are ideal as they prevent edgings from pressing against the skin.
- Avoid anything textured like lace, tulle or fabric with embroidery to prevent thread fiber from brushing against skin and causing pain.
Best Bra Styles for Every Size
Soft-Cup Bras: These bras offer good support for women of all sizes. Choose something with a wide shoulder straps as they won’t dig into your skin like the thinner ones do. A front-closure design would also reduce the pain of putting on and removing a bra.
Sports Bras: These bras can be very comfortable and give good support for women of all sizes. Opt for something softer and with a wider stretch to prevent squeezing your ribcage.
Bralettes: For smaller sized women, a bralette might work. They are usually made with comfortable soft-cups with moderate support.
Bandeaus: Another good option for small to medium sized women, bandeaus would ensure that no wires or edges would press against the skin