October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and We cannot stress how important it is to do those monthly self-checks! Taking just a few minutes every month to ensure everything is normal in the breast department could potentially save your life.
Because it’s super important, let’s take a few minutes to go through how to check, the importance of checking and some other important things to consider.
“Breast cancer is often thought of as something that only affects women, but in very rare cases, men can get it too.”
We’re asking our carers and HQ staff to send us selfies to document their best pink . Wear It Pink encourage people to wear a pink outfit, item of clothing or fun accessory as part of fundraising days, to raise money to aid their life-changing research.
Know what your normal is.
We are all unique individuals, so taking the time to get to know your breasts and checking them regularly means you’ll get to know what normal looks like for you. Take note of the shape, size and any little lumps and surface bumps. It’s also worth noting that our breasts can change a little throughout the month or as a result of pregnancy, taking contraception or just because it’s that time of the month. Get to know the natural changes that occur month to month, and you will be able to spot anything unusual in the breast area quickly.
How to check
- Look at your breasts, note any changes in size, shape, outline, or skin puckering or dimpling.
- Have a feel. Feel the area from your armpit, across and beneath your breast and up to your collarbone. Be aware of any lumps, puckering or dimples or skin thickening that is different on the other side.
- Check your nipples, look for any discharge that isn’t milky, bleeding or rash, crusting on or around your nipple that doesn’t heal. Also, check for any changes to the position of your nipples.
If you feel anything unusual, there’s a good chance it’s innocent. But you should book an appointment with your GP and get it checked out regardless. Regardless of your health or age, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
We know it might feel embarrassing to talk to a doctor about your breasts but trust us, they have seen and heard it all before. It’s their job to understand your symptoms. The more they know, the better they will be able to help you. In most cases, a doctor will:
- Ask you about your concerns and how long you have had them.
- Be prepared for them to examine you. You can prepare for this by wearing something easy to remove and put back on again.
- If your doctor shares your concern, they will refer you for further investigation. This doesn’t mean you have breast cancer. It means your doctor would like you to be checked by a specialist.
- It isn’t breast cancer in most cases, but early detection is critical as you’ll have access to a better range of treatments.
Ashridge Home Care
During the pandemic, nearly 1 million women missed a potentially life-saving mammogram because of COVID-19 in a bid to free up resources and reduce the risk of spreading the virus. The worry is that now 1000’s of women caught in this backlog could potentially have breast cancer which has gone undetected. So if you were due a mammogram that was delayed due to the pandemic, please don’t delay in booking one now. It could save your life!
You have so many things to take care of, and between work and family, a day that never ends… This Breast Cancer Awareness Month, We’re asking you to take a breath and put your health first. Get your mammogram – it could save your life, and nothing is more important than that!