How Gynecomastia Affects Men of Different Ages
Gynecomastia is a common condition that causes enlarged male breast tissue. Though it can occur at any developmental stage, its causes and subsequent treatment differ depending on your age. Gynecomastia can affect one or both breasts, sometimes asymmetrically. Pseudogynecomastia increases the breasts’ fat but not glandular tissues.
While breast enlargement is generally physically harmless, it can be embarrassing and adversely affect your self-esteem. Fortunately, safe, effective male breast reduction is available, depending on the condition’s cause and your age.
Symptoms of Gynecomastia
Gynecomastia symptoms include:
- Swollen breast tissue
- Breast tenderness
- Discomfort, especially in adolescents
- Nipple sensitivity
Gynecomastia in Infants
More than half of baby boys are born with enlarged breast tissue because of high estrogen levels from their mothers. This swollen breast tissue will fade naturally within a few weeks after birth.
Gynecomastia in Adolescents
Over half of all adolescent males deal with gynecomastia, according to the National Institutes of Health. For younger boys, gynecomastia symptoms result from higher-than-average estrogen levels during puberty. This problem often resolves on its own in adulthood, but not always.
Gynecomastia in Adult Men
Gynecomastia is prevalent in adult men. Some estimates suggest up to 65% of men between 20 and 92 experience this condition. Though the symptoms of gynecomastia in adolescents and adults can be similar, the causes differ.
In addition to hormone imbalances, male breast enlargement in adult men can result from medical conditions, including thyroid problems or pituitary cancer. Recreational drug and alcohol use can also cause gynecomastia.
For men who want to have more masculine chests, male breast reduction surgery is a practical aesthetic solution. During this procedure, board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Stephen Bresnick of Encino, CA, removes excess fat, skin, and glandular tissue from the chest area to create a flatter, more masculine breast contour. As a bonus, the fat removed during the procedure can help sculpt the pectoralis muscle for a toned chest area.
The physical benefits are often incredible, but the emotional effects are significant, too. Many men experience a dramatic confidence boost.
Treating gynecomastia helps men of all ages feel more comfortable going shirtless at the beach or pool. However, for optimal aesthetic benefits, it’s essential to partner with a board-certified plastic surgeon with exceptional skill and vast experience in helping men achieve their cosmetic goals.