This is a painful condition more common in men than women. It is in effect a friction burn (also known as chafing) caused by constant rubbing of a T-shirt on the nipple. It is often more likely in cold and wet weather.
Treatment of Jogger's Nipple
What can the athlete do about it?
- Protect the injury from further trauma and allow it to heal. This should not take long. Prevention is better than cure.
- The correct sports bra can help, as can applying petroleum jelly to the nipples or covering them with zinc oxide tape before running.
- Prevention is the best cure and applying tape or a blister plaster over the nipple for a run will protect them and prevent chafing.
There are many types of sports bra available and the most suitable for one person is not necessarily the best for another person. When choosing a sports bra you should take into account:
- Support level - this will depend on your size (larger breasts need more support) and your sport (high impact?)
- Compression or encapsulation - Compression bras basically compress the breasts against the chest and are usually crop-top styles. Encapsulation bras keep the breast separate in defined cups, more similar to a standard bra. Women with larger breasts should pick an encapsulation bra. Smaller breasted women may feel a compression bra is sufficient. A few styles both compress and encapsulate.
- Strap width - Make sure the straps are wider than an standard bra. This will help support and breasts and prevent the straps digging in.
- Material - Make sure the material is breathable and comfortable to wear. Also ensure that there are no seams on the cups which could cause nipple chafing!