When you are concerned about this type of change in your health, the best thing for you to do is to see your primary care physician
right away for a history and physical exam. There are several different things that can cause breast tenderness, and your physician should be able to help determine what is causing your symptoms. First, breast tissue changes with the menstrual cycle, and it is possible that breast tenderness is simply related to hormonal changes. Second, there are benign cysts or adenomas that can form in breast tissue, and although these are typically not painful, having someone hug that area may have caused some discomfort. Third, breast tissue can become bruised and painful--you may not remember a specific incident, but a hematoma can easily form in breast tissue with minimal trauma, particularly in women with larger breasts. Finally, it will be important to rule out any symptoms that could be consistent with a breast tumor. The vast majority of breast cancers are NOT painful, but there are some subtypes of cancer that can be associated with pain and visual changes in the tissue over the breast. Speaking with your doctor
and having him or her perform a basic exam is the best thing for you to do in this situation. Your doctor may also want to recommend a mammogram, given that you are now within the age range where this test is considered for breast cancer screening
. Good luck.