For October – Breast Cancer Awareness Month, learn how to self-test for any suspicions.
Breast cancer is a cancer that develops within the breast tissue of either woman and men, but is 100 times less common in men. Many women don’t discover the cancer until it is too late, even though it is easy to detect early breast cancer yourself with a few tests at home.
Suspicious signs include: lumps in the breast, change in breast shape, dimpling of the skin, fluid coming from the nipple, or a red scaly patch of skin. In 2012, 1.68 million cases were recorded and resulted in 522,000 deaths, therefore women should always take precautions and self-test.
Step 1 – Observation: Carefully look at you breasts in front of a mirror with your arms to your hips and shoulders straight. Look for any changes or unusualities like changes in breast size, color, change in nipple position, dimpling, puckering or bulging in the skin. Redness, soreness and rashes can also be symptoms or signs of breast cancer.
Step 2 – Observe some more: Look for the exact same changes, but with your arms raised straight up.
Step 3 – Check for leakage: Check if there are any signs of any type of liquids coming out of your nipples. Signs can include watery, milky or yellow fluids, and even blood.
Step 4 – Feel around: While lying down, use your right hand to feel your left breast and then your left hand to feel your right breast. Keep a firm and smooth touch, and feel around in circular motion using the upper halves of your fingers. It is important that you cover the whole breast area from your collarbone to your under-breasts, and from your cleavage to your armpits.
Step 5 – Repeat in the shower: Many women have feel that it is easier to feel their breasts when the skin is wet and slippery. You can repeat step 4 in the shower, or while sitting our standing.
Keep in mind that it is important to regularly visit your doctor for check-ups, and to get professional help in case you feel the slightest suspicion.