Breast cancer awareness is a campaign that endeavors to raise awareness and diminish the stigma related to breast cancer. One in eight women develop breast cancer, so National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, held in October, serves as an occasion to remind all about the importance of early detection.
As a result of these movements, more and more people can become informed about the traits of breast cancer. This will lead to earlier detection and better treatment outcomes for women afflicted with the disease.
What You Need to Learn About Breast Cancer Awareness Month
In many countries worldwide, National Breast Cancer Awareness Month (NBCAM) is observed in October, occasionally denoted as Pinktober. Several breast cancer awareness supporters focus their efforts to seek sponsorships for special activities. NBCAM was started in 1985 by the American Cancer Society (ACS) in collaboration with AstraZeneca.
How to Support Breast Cancer Awareness Month
How can you become involved in spreading breast cancer awareness this October? You can support the battle against breast cancer by following the ideas mentioned here:
- Educate yourself by bonding with a family or friend suffering from breast cancer.
- Contribute money to a breast cancer charity.
- Participate in one or many of the national or international fundraising walks.
- Host a simple fundraiser event to commemorate Breast Cancer Awareness Mont.
- Donate your time for volunteer opportunities focused on breast cancer awareness.
- Be proactive and get yourself screened for breast cancer.
The third Friday in October and is called National Mammography Day. This day is dedicated to spreading awareness of the importance of mammograms.
What Signs and Symptoms to Look for
Breast cancer symptoms can differ from person to person. Some common breast cancer symptoms include:
- Skin changes (swelling or redness in one or both breasts
- Increased size or shape changes in the breast(s)
- Visible changes in one or both nipples
- Nipple discharge besides breast milk
- Regular pain in the breast(s)
- Lumps or nodes on or inside the breast(s)
How Can You Get Diagnosed?
Although breast cancer mostly displays no symptoms in the premature stage, timely detection can help reverse the impact altogether. Feeling the presence of a bump or an area of solidified tissue over the breast is the most familiar symptom of breast cancer. Of the lumps, almost 90% are non-cancerous (benign), but any lumps found should be screened for cancer with the help of biopsy techniques such as fine needle aspiration cytology (FNAC).
How to Reduce the Risk of Breast Cancer
Several factors during your lifespan can influence your risk of developing breast cancer. While some factors are beyond your control, there are measures you can take to help reduce the risk such as:
- Maintaining a healthy weight
- Exercising regularly
- Avoiding or limiting your alcoholic consumption
- Using oral contraceptives prescribed by your doctor
- Breastfeeding your children, if possible.
- Consulting your doctor for other alternatives to lower your risk if you have a genetic predisposition to breast cancer.
Staying healthy will minimize your risk of developing any type of cancer, and increase your chances of outliving cancer if it occurs.