By Corinne Evans
We all know someone who has been affected by breast cancer, whether it’s someone in the family, a friend, colleague or someone you went to school with, breast cancer and every year women across the world and diagnosed with breast cancer. This month is breast cancer awareness month and we wanted to show our support for this and share some information on what breast cancer is and how to spot the signs and symptoms.
Nearly all cases of breast cancer occur in women, although men can get the disease as well. It is the second most common form of cancer among women (after skin cancer).Statistics indicate that tumors diagnosed in younger women may be more aggressive and less responsive to treatment, making early detection key.So how to do we ensure early detection? This is where checking yourself if vital and here is now you do it.
Check yourself, it could save your life.
Did you know that when breast cancer is detected early, in the localised stage, the 5-year survival rate is with 40% of diagnosed breast cancers being self-detected, establishing what is “normal” for you is an important step to knowing your body.When you educate yourself, you empower yourself to make better decisions. Knowledge is power!
LEARN HOW TO CHECK YOURSELF
By giving your breasts daily massages and establishing a monthly self-check routine will help you know them and know when something isn’t right. Remember having boobies is normal and so is feeling them up!
Look in the mirror and see what you’ve got going on. Put your hands over your head and then on your hips. boob and side boob are created equal, so be sure to include both.
Cover your entire breast up and down and into the armpit area, ﬁnishing inside your armpit. Leave no breast area unchecked! Side boobs are boobies too. Spend extra time in your pits where your lymphatic system lives and where many breast cancers develop – they may need extra circle massage love.
Next, keep looking in the mirror and put one hand behind your head. Now place three ﬁngers to your breast and check for anything that strikes you as weird or not your “normal.”
UP AND DOWN
Move your three ﬁngers in small circles with different levels of pressure. Choose easy, medium and then hard while walking your ﬁngers to the next area, instead of lifting them off your boobies.
Lastly, squeeze each nipple. If there is any discharge or pain, see a doctor right away.
Now we know how to check our breast, what are we looking for?
Breast cancer is a group of abnormal cells growing in an uncontrolled way, starting in the breast tissue. These cells are called a tumour. Over time these cells can invade other parts of the body, interrupting normal body function, and can lead to death.
Signs and symptoms of breast cancer can include:
- A change in size or shape
- A lump or area that feels thicker than the rest of the breast
- A change in skin texture such as puckering or dimpling (like the skin of an orange)
- Redness or rash on the skin and/or around the nipple
- Your nipple has become pulled in or looks different, for example changed its position or shape
- Liquid that comes from the nipple without squeezing
- Pain in your breast or your armpit that’s there all or almost all of the time
- A swelling in your armpit or around your collarbone
- Many symptoms of breast cancer, such as breast pain or a lump, may in fact be caused by normal Breast changes or a benign (not cancer) breast condition. However, if you notice a change, it’s Important to see your GP (local doctor) as soon as you can.
Breast cancer shouldn’t be taken lightly and making sure you check yourself regularly is important, especially when it comes to early detection. So don’t feel silly about checking your boobs and if in doubt get it checked out.
For more information on breast cancer why not check out