In Beppy, our mission is to reconcile women with their menstrual health but also to empower them in every aspect of their life. The first step is taking care of ourselves, as simple as it may sound, we often are unfamiliar with our body.
This month, we want to talk about Breast cancer, the most common cancer in women. According to the American Cancer Society, when breast cancer is detected early, the 5-year relative survival rate is 99%. But… early detection includes doing monthly breast self-exams, and scheduling regular clinical breast exams and mammograms.
Being familiar with your own body helps you notice if there are any changes. Indeed, 40% of diagnosed breast cancers are detected by women who feel a lump (Johns Hopkins Medical center). That’s why we wanted to remind adult women of all ages to perform self-breast exams every month and have healthy habits!
How to perform self-breast exam?
1) Check in the shower
With the pads of your middle fingers, check the entire breast and the area around. Press down with light, medium, and stronger pressure. You should check both of your breasts each month and look for any new lump, thickening, hardened knot, or other breast changes.
2) Check in the Mirror
Look at your breasts with your arms at your sides. and also with your arms high overhead. Look for any swelling, dimpling of the skin, changes in the nipples or in the contour.
3) Lying Down
When you are lying down the breast tissue spreads out evenly along the chest wall. Put a pillow under your right shoulder and your right arm behind your head. Using the other hand move your fingers around the entire right breast area and armpit.
If you find a lump, there is no need to panic as 8 out of 10 lumps are not cancerous. However for additional peace of mind, it’s recommended to call your doctor whenever you have concerns.
What Can you do to reduce the Risk Of Breast Cancer?
Although you cannot prevent cancer, some habits that can help reduce your risk are:
- Stay physically active
- Eat fruits and vegetables
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Don’t smoke
- Limit alcohol consumption
We have more power over our bodies than we may think, explore and be curious. For more information about breast cancer and how to perform a self-breast exam check: NBCF or WCRF. You can also check this complete list of resources.
Women’s well-being is our number one priority, let’s be together in this fight and all the ones to come!