When it comes to our health, we often find ourselves lacking the necessary information. The self breast examination is an essential procedure for every woman because it can help detect any early signs of breast cancer as well as other conditions. The self breast examination helps you identify any changes to your breasts so you can take action and seek further assistance if needed. Unfortunately, many women are unaware of how essential a self-breast exam is until it’s too late. Raising awareness is the first step in helping others understand the importance of self-breast examination. If you haven’t done so already, read on to explore 5 facts about the self-breast examination and its benefits, along with 6 steps to a proper self-breast exam that can help prevent cancerous tumours and other related diseases
5 Important Facts About Self-Breast Examination
- The self-breast examination is essential for all women, regardless of age, race, or ethnicity.
- Women should do a self-breast examination once a month for the best results.
- Self-breast examination is best done after the menstrual period.
- Breast self-examination is simple and quick.
- Self-breast examination is essential for women with a family history of breast cancer.
Detect Cancer Early and Save Yourself!
Cancer is the most feared disease in the world, and unfortunately, it has a poor prognosis. If you are detected with breast cancer in Stage 4, then the 5-year survival rate is as low as 24%. But if you are detected at Stage 1, you have a near 100% survival rate. Hence, early detection becomes a key means to fight cancer.
If you have breast cancer, you need to get it treated right away. If you don’t, it can spread to other parts of your body. That is why it is so important that you know how to do breast self-exams. If you do them regularly, you can catch any problems early on, which means that you can get treatment much sooner. That can make all the difference in the world when it comes to survival rates.
Self-Breast Exam is NOT Difficult
A breast self examination is a systematic step-by-step approach to examine the look and feel of ones breasts to detect any signs and symptoms of breast problems like a lump, skin irritation, dimpling, nipple retraction (turning inward) or discharge other than breast milk. The exam is done monthly between the 7th and 10th day of a woman's menstrual cycle when the female hormones are mostly in balance. The aim of the breast self exam is to detect breast cancer early.
The breast self examination is a 5 step process.
Look at your breasts in the mirror with your shoulders straight and your arms down, up and on your hips. You should look out for:
Breasts that are their usual size, shape, and colour
Breasts that are evenly shaped without visible distortion or swelling
Stand and press your three middle fingers to your breast, working around the breast in a circular direction using your right hand to feel your left breast and then your left hand to feel your right breast. Use a firm, smooth touch with the finger pads of your hand, keeping the fingers flat and together. Use a circular motion, about the size of a 1 Rupee coin. Follow a pattern to be sure that you cover the whole breast. You can begin at the outer edge of the breast, moving in smaller circles until you reach the nipple.
Squeeze your nipples to check for discharge. This could be a watery, milky, or yellow fluid or blood. In case of a bloody discharge, see your doctor immediately.
Next, feel your breasts while lying down. Place a pillow or folded towel under your left shoulder. This helps your breast tissue spread evenly across your chest wall. Now repeat Steps 2 and 3.
Finally, feel your breasts while you are in the shower. It is easier to feel your breasts when the skin is wet and slippery. Cover your entire breast, using the same hand movements described in Step 2.
3 Most Common Signs of Breast Cancer During Self-Exam
There are many signs of breast cancer that you can check during self-examination. You should check for these signs each month before you do the full examination.
- Changes in texture: Your breasts may feel different from month to month. This can include a lumpy or bumpy texture or becoming more firm. Breast lumps are the most common sign of breast cancer.
- Changes in appearance: You should check for any changes in the look of your breasts. This includes dimpling, puckering, or puckering.
- Changes in colour: Your breasts may look different from month to month. This can include the skin looking mottled, dimpling, or becoming bluer.
Yearly Breast Screening
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Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer among women. It is found in the breast tissue and can also spread to other parts of the body. A breast exam is the best way to check for breast cancer. Every woman should do breast exams regularly to see if anything is wrong. If you find a lump or a hard spot on your breast, you should see a doctor right away. It could be cancer. Doctors can find and treat breast cancer early, so it does not spread to other parts of the body. The self-breast examination is an essential procedure for all women. It can help detect any early signs of breast cancer as well as other conditions. If you haven’t done so already, it’s time to familiarize yourself with the proper techniques of breast self-examination.
If you have a lump, seek consultation right away at Cancer Clinics, Hyderabad.Book Appointment