Breast cancer is the most common form of cancer in the U.S., with more than 255,000 estimated new deaths each year, according to the National Cancer Institute. After skin cancer, it is the most common type in women, with 100 times more cases that develop annually than in men. Because October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month many organizations are trying to educate others about the early warning signs of the disease.
Prevention begins with knowing how healthy breasts look and feel. When doing a self-examination, they should be void of any clear lumps or masses. While it is common for some women to experience lumpiness due to fibrocystic changes, any abnormal masses in the breast should be brought to your doctor’s attention.
As lumps or masses aren’t usually detectable until they’re about 10 to 15 millimeters in size – and then in less than half of all cases – experts say self- examinations may not be as effective as we once thought they were.
Other early warning signs Freedom Home Care found include:
- Pain in the breast or nipple
- Swelling in the breast
- Dimpling or irritation of the skin
- Nipple retraction
- Thickening, scaliness or redness of the breast skin or nipple
- Nipple discharge
- Itchy Breasts
- Pain in the Upper Back, Shoulder and Neck
- Changes in Breast Shape
- Lumps in the Armpits
Be Proactive With Early prevention By:
- Eating Right – fruits, vegetables, proteins, and grains all contribute to good health. Limit sugars and processed foods.
- Exercise – a regular fitness routine such as walking, running, swimming or cycling can help reduce risk factors.
- Reducing Stress – Not only does stress negatively affect our health, but our emotional well-being, too.
- Regular Check-Ups – Even if your loved one is already receiving Chicago in-home care, routine doctors exams are helpful in finding problems before they start. Screening, health services, and treatments are all part of the preventative care that can lead to a longer, healthier life.
There are many kinds of technology that are used to help treat cancer early on. Some of these include radiation, chemotherapy, and surgery. But newer forms of prevention are on the horizon. Some computer software systems can check mammograms for specific patterns in breast tissue that surface before a lump appears. This technology is called “architectural distortion.” Because some of these methods are years away from public use, experts say the best form of prevention is self-awareness!