October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month
One of the most common types of cancer is breast cancer. It’s a disease that develops in the breast due to cells don’t work together correctly, get out of control, and start forming tumors in one or both breasts. If left untreated, the disease can spread to other parts of the body and become fatal.
Breast cancer is one of the most common types of cancer in women. According to Planned Parenthood, 1 in 8 women will get breast cancer, and it’s the deadliest type of cancer for women. Each year there are over 240,000 people diagnosed in the U.S. alone, and around 40,000 people die from it. Many advances in pre-screening and treatment have been made in the last 20 years. Early detection and knowledge is imperative to advanced care, be proactive.
Do you have symptoms of breast cancer?
Lumps are the most common cancer signs found. Watch this video or follow this link to become familiar with how to check your armpit and breast for lumps, which is a common indication for concern. It’s important to know that some women have naturally lumpy breasts (and it’s okay). Anytime a lump is found, you should get it checked out!
Other possible signs of breast cancer may include:
- Dimples on the skin
- Breast that swells
- Inward and sticking out nipples
- Irregular discharge or blood oozing from the nipple
- Pain in nipple or breast
The best-case scenario is to catch them early so that it’s easier to treat.
Some of these signs may not develop until the disease is further along. Breast Cancer Screening can help reduce the risk of disease spreading. Every year at your wellness exam, ask for a breast check-up! If you are over the age of 40, consider getting a mammogram every year. If you have breast cancer or ovarian cancer in your family history, it is a good idea to speak to your doctor as you at a higher risk.
Developing healthy habits can reduce your risk of developing breast cancer
- Exercise and eat right
- Stop smoking (and don’t start)
- Cut back on drinking
- Avoid toxic chemicals that are linked to cancer
- Breastfeed your offspring
The best thing we can do is develop healthy habits to reduce your risk before breast cancer even becomes a thought. There are many clinics in the Williamson County area that offer preventative health care, including pregnancy tests, STI testing and treatment, cholesterol testing, diabetes testing, referral mammograms, oral birth control, and immunizations. We are fortunate to live in an area that provides so many great options.
Take advantage of these resources, and enjoy a healthier life!
- Williamson County & Cities Health District: Well Women Exam for Healthy Texas Women
- Breast Cancer Resource Center
- United Way of Williamson County
- Planned Parenthood (Northern Austin)