Recently, my nipples have been sore, and the area around it. What is happening?

Thanks for your question. Nipples can be sore for many reasons. Some common reasons and treatments:

  • Injury. The muscles by the nipple may be sore from physical activity (such as playing sports or going to the gym). If something hit the chest (such as a soccer ball), this can also cause discomfort. Some things that may help include: taking a break from physical activity, stretching the muscles, icing the area, and/or taking some over the counter pain medicine (make sure to read the instructions so that you take the correct amount).
  • Puberty. During puberty there are many hormone changes that can lead to soreness by the nipple and/or chest. Often the tissue under the nipples will start to grow as well, this is called pubertal gynecomastia ( This usually goes away on its own with time.
  • Skin Problem. Sometimes the skin on your nipples can get irritated or dry, which can cause them to feel sore. If the skin is dry try to moisturize the area with a lotion or cream. If you notice it looks like a rash, you should contact your health care provider.

We recommend contacting your health care provider if:

  • You have a lot of pain
  • The pain does not go away within a few days
  • If there is any liquid coming from your nipple
  • If you notice any redness on your chest
  • If you notice any lumps or bumps on your breast tissue