Breast cancer is a type of cancer that originates from the cells in the breast tissue. This disease occurs when genetic mutations cause these cells to divide and grow uncontrollably. While females have a higher susceptibility to developing breast cancer, it's essential to understand that various risk factors contribute to its complexity.
Risk factors you cannot change
- Gender: Females are more likely to get breast cancer.
- Aging: The risk of breast cancer increases, especially after the age of 50.
- Genetics: BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations are associated with a greater risk of ovarian and breast cancer.
- Menstrual Cycle Before Age 12: Starting menstruation before the age of 12 can increase the risk due to longer hormone exposure.
- Dense Breasts: Dense breast tissue, with more cells, especially in the milk-producing area, increases the risk of getting breast cancer.
- Personal History: If you have previously had breast cancer, it increases your risk.
- Family History: Having a family history of breast or ovarian cancer in close relatives (sister, mother, or daughter) can elevate the risk.
- Certain Drugs: Some medications may be associated with an increased risk.
- Radiation Therapy: Previous radiation therapy to the chest or breast can raise the risk.
Risk factors you can change
- Weight: Maintaining a healthy weight reduces the risk of getting breast cancer.
- Physical activity: Being physically active can lower the risk.
- Hormone use: Taking hormones, usually taken during menopause, such as estrogen and progesterone, can increase the risk, as these hormones stimulate the proliferation of cells.
- Reproductive history: Factors like having children at a younger age and breastfeeding can affect risk.
- Alcohol consumption: Women who consume alcohol have a higher risk of developing breast cancer.