Because breast cancer affects women of all ages, it is important that all women, including young women, examine their breasts regularly to pick up any changes. Self-examination is important because if you’re aware of how your breasts normally look and feel, you’re more likely to notice a change if it develops.
In addition to seeing your doctor each year for a breast examination, you should check your breasts regularly. A good time to do this is after the last day of your menstrual cycle or if you do not have periods, the same date each month. Most women find that their breasts are easier to examine just after their period when any premenstrual pain and lumpiness have settled.
You may check your breasts standing up, for example in the shower, or lying down, for example before going to sleep. Your partner should also be alert and look for changes in your breasts.
You can check your breasts by:
Looking at the shape and appearance of your breasts and nipples in the mirror with your hands by your sides
Raising your arms above your head and looking for a change in the shape of the breasts
Feeling for lumps in the breasts either while lying down or standing
Feeling for lumps in the nipples area and in the armpits
You should look out for the following changes:
A lump or lumpiness or even a change in shape or appearance of your breast such a dimpling, redness and appearance of veins
An area that feels different to the rest of your breast or any pain in your breast
Any change in the shape or appearance of your nipple, such as your nipple being pulled in or development of a rash
A discharge from your nipple, particularly if it is bloody
If you find a change don't panic
Most changes in the breast are not related to breast cancer. However, if you do find a change in your breast or a lump, it is important to visit your GP immediately.
Remember, the sooner you see your GP after finding a change in your breast, the better
Your GP will conduct a clinical breast examination to determine whether you will need further testing.
Take control of your health – you can help protect yourself against breast cancer
Unfortunately, many of us will know someone who has been touched by breast cancer, which affects one in eight Australian women1 – but you can help protect yourself against the disease.
More women are surviving breast cancer than ever before due to better testing and treatment. Breast cancer survival is now up to 85 percent1. The smaller a breast cancer is, the simpler the treatment and the better the outcome.
Early detection has been proven to save lives.Be 'Breast Aware' and check your breasts regularly
Extracted from Blood Rayne