Medically reviewed by Deborah Weatherspoon, Ph.D., R.N., CRNA — Written by Corinne O'Keefe Osborn — Updated on October 17, 2018

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If you want lớn see average abs, just look around. If you want lớn see great abs, look in a magazine. But when it comes to nipples và vulvas, you’re pretty much on your own.

Bạn đang xem: Areolae Definition And Meaning

It’s time khổng lồ free the nipple, or at least demystify it a bit.

Your areola is the colored area around each nipple. Like breasts themselves, areolas come in all shapes, sizes, và colors.

They can range in size from penny khổng lồ pepperoni slice lớn salad plate. They can be anywhere from the palest pink khổng lồ the deepest brown. And they can point up, down, or all around.

Many women worry that their areolas or nipples don’t look “normal,” but there really is no normal. Take a look at these pictures of real breasts to lớn get a sense of how varied boobs can really be.


What’s the average areola size?

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The average areola is 4 centimeters in diameter. However, areola kích thước can depend on several factors, including breast kích thước.

Some research suggests that the areola is typically three times smaller than the breast that it’s on. It’s usually three times larger than the nipple it surrounds.


Can areola kích thước change over time?

Yes. It isn’t uncomtháng for the form size of your areolas và nipples to lớn change throughout your lifetime.

During puberty, your ovaries begin producing the female hormone estrogene. This causes your nipples to lớn grow & your areolas lớn darken. At first, you may only have small mounds of fat beneath your areolas.

As your breasts continue to lớn grow, your areolas will appear smaller in proportion.

The kích thước of your areolas & nipples may also change while you’re pregnant. During pregnancy, your body produces hormones that prepare you to breastfeed. Your breasts và nipples may grow considerably, và your areolas may darken.

Your breasts should return khổng lồ their previous state once you stop producing breast milk.

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Areolas are part of your skin, which means they can stretch. When you gain weight và your breasts get bigger, your areolas may grow, too. Your areolas may or may not return to their previous size after you thua thảm weight.


Does their color affect how big or small they look?
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If your areolas are considerably darker than your breasts, it can draw more attention lớn their size.

Areola and nipple colors vary widely. People who have darker skin often have sầu darker nipples than people with paler skin, but not always. Nipple và areola color can vary considerably aước ao people of the same ethnicity.

The only thing that commonly affects the color of areolas is pregnancy. Doctors theorize that nipples and areolas grow & darken khổng lồ make them more visible to infants.


Is it possible to lớn change the kích thước of your areola?

There is no easy way to change the form size of your areolas. If you’re concerned about their appearance, talk lớn your doctor about how you’re feeling. They can discuss your options for areola reduction và answer any questions you may have sầu.

Surgery

Areola reduction surgery is considered an elective sầu procedure, which means that insurance doesn’t cover it. Although the surgery is relatively simple, it can be expensive sầu.

To vày this, your doctor will remove sầu the pigmented tissue và use it to reconstruct a smaller areola. They’ll place a permanent stich inside the breast khổng lồ prevents the areola from stretching out again. The incisions are made along the border of the new areola, so surgical scars are usually well hidden. The healing time is usually minimal.

Areola reduction surgery can be done alone or in combination with a breast augmentation or breast lift.

When done alone, only local anesthesia is used. This reduces your risk of surgical complications.

This surgery can interfere with your ability to lớn breastfeed. It can also decrease the feeling in your nipples, a common side effect of breast surgeries.

Topicals

Some people suggest using skin-lightening creams khổng lồ reduce the appearance of large areolas. You shouldn’t use skin-lightening creams without your doctor or dermatologist’s approval.

Your doctor may recommkết thúc prescription creams used to treat hyperpigmentation, such as hydroquinone or retinol. These can lighten dark skin, but it may take anywhere from six months khổng lồ several years of consistent use before you see results.

Your doctor may also recommover an over-the-counter cream containing:

2% hydroquinoneazelaic acidglycolic acidkojic acidretinolVi-Ta-Min C

Don’t buy any skin-lightening or bleaching cream manufactured outside of the United States. Skin-lightening products manufactured abroad often contain chemicals that can cause serious damage khổng lồ your skin and overall health.