12.5% of all women in the United States will be exposed to Breast Cancer in their lifetime. Breast Cancer Awareness and Education is the key to survival.
No one knows for sure why breast cancer happens, and for those of you suffering from it, our hearts go out to you. With urbanization come a lot of issues, such as air, water and food pollution. There are plenty of contaminants in almost everything we consume these days. And to add to it, genetic mutations, heredity, physical hazards, chemical hazards, environmental toxins, stress, alcohol, smoking, obesity etc. have been known to contribute towards the development of this cancer.
So how do you check for breast cancer symptoms?
One should look out for lumps around the armpit or the breast. Even check if the nipples have been discharging a lot or if there is skin retraction around the nipple, or even if the nipples thicken and there is redness around the area.
You should if you find such symptoms check with a cancer expert and conduct mammography. It is reliable and cheap and can detect which stage of cancer you may be suffering from. Doctors say this test should be done once every twenty four months, especially if you are forty years of age and above.
Detect early to save yourself
Yes, it is important to get the early detection done to survive cancer. Check if you are on the “high risk” group and if you are above 30 years of age, once a month screening for cancer detection is a must.
Prevention is better than cure
To have a healthy life, you need to exercise well, indulge in positivity, sleep well and eat well too. This would keep you far away from diabetes, cancers of any kind, heart issues and hypertension as well. Eat foods rich in micro nutrients and antioxidants, veggies and fresh fruits are the best. Colored veggies, cauliflower, cabbage, flax seeds grape seeds, olive oil and even wheat grass can help
Have you thought of breast self-examination BSE
Now this should be done once you complete your menstrual cycle every month. And if you are above 20 years of age, this is an important routine to be observed, say doctors.
Clinical breast examination is a must
Trained experts would help you find out in early stages if you are suffering from cancer or not. Women between 35 and 60 should opt for CBE.
Get a mammography done
If there are small cancers which cannot be seen, mammography will detect them. Women in the postmenopausal stage should use this method of breast cancer detection. Anyone below the age of forty five shouldn’t try this method though.
Needle biopsy or FNAC also known as Core Biopsy
If there are lesions on the breast which look suspicious, Needle Biopsy would confirm the presence of breast cancer. This would be a mandatory test which would confirm if cancer is there or not, and advice would be given before any treatment is conducted any further.
BSE once again proves to be the best
And this is how you do It Yourself
1. Look at your breasts facing the mirror.
2. Your shoulders should be straight
3. On your hips rest your arms
4. Check if the breasts look normal in shape, size and color as well.
5. Is there any swelling or distortion you see, or skin bulging, dimpling and puckering noticed
6. Any change in the position of the nipple or has the nipple inverted
7. Look at your breasts again and squeeze the nipple, is there any discharge
If you find any noticeable difference or change, we would advise getting in touch with a cancer specialist at the earliest.
Reported by Mary Parker and Jim Donahue