Prepare a breast health plan
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, which serves as a reminder that your breast health is important. One in eight women born today in the U.S. will receive a breast cancer diagnosis at some point in their lives; breast cancer is the second most common cancer among women. Early detection can be life-saving because in its early stages, the cancer hasn’t yet spread to other parts of the body. It’s important to prepare a plan for your breast health.
Take the time to familiarize yourself with how your breasts normally look and feel. This will help you spot anything that may be out of the ordinary. Knowing what to look for allows you to gauge whether or not you should visit your urgent care center for a breast evaluation.
If you do find anunusual lump in your breast, it’s not necessarily cause for worry. According to National Breast Cancer Foundation, Inc., eight out of 10 lumps aren’t cancerous. However, it is important to take the time each month to check your breasts.
Unusual things to look for when you examine your breasts include:
- A lump or thickening in or near the breast or underarm area
- A change in the size or shape of the breast
- Dimpling or puckering in the skin of the breast
- A nipple turned inward into the breast
- Discharge from the nipple
- Scaly, red or swollen skin on the breast, nipple or areola
Equally as important as self-checks are regularly scheduled mammogram screenings. It is vital to remain consistent with your mammogram screenings because in the beginning stages of breast cancer, symptoms are usually nonexistent. Mammograms allow doctors to detect cancerous cells before they get large enough for detection by touch or sight.
- Mammograms are considered safe, painless and quick.
- Women who are 40 years and older should have a mammogram every year, though if you have an immediate family member with breast cancer, you may need to start sooner.
Help raise awareness by participating in Breast Reconstruction Awareness Day on Oct. 19. BRA Day is an educational day for women considering post-mastectomy breast reconstruction as well as for the friends and family members who support those women. Plan your educational event here so you can spread awareness about women’s health and breast reconstruction. The variety of events you can create is limitless!
Check out the free e-book What Every Woman Needs to Know for resources regarding breast awareness and health. If you or a loved one has any health concerns, Velocity Care Urgent Treatment Center is here to help. We provide examinations and consultations usually within an hour or less of your arrival.
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