Thursday, October 6, 2011

It's October

It's October, 
so you must know what that means? 
It's National Breast Cancer Month, "an annual international health campaign organized by major breast cancer  charities every October to increase awareness of the disease and to raise funds for research into its cause, prevention, diagnosis, treatment and cure." Since, the campaign's establishment 26 years ago, their has been significant approval in awareness. Countless individuals are participating in spreading the word and supporting the cause. For example, the entire National Football League (NFL) embraced the month of October by incorporating pink ribbons into their stadiums and by allowing their players to wear pink accessories during game time for National Breast Cancer Month.

Furthermore, the White House, lit up pink for National Breast Cancer Month. 

There is no doubt that the breast cancer campaign is truly
making an impact in America and around the world. 

Although, there has been improvement in awareness and funds are continuously being contributed to breast cancer research, there is still no cure. Help is still needed. To help support the Breast Cancer Research Foundation click here and/or to support Susan G. Komen for the Cure click here; both are leading organizations in the fight to end breast cancer.

Moreover, it is imperative for you to get YOUR BREAST examined. Here's what you need to know about examining your breast. First and foremost you should know that "self examination is not a suitable replacement for professional medical examination. Self-tests should only be used to enhance existing medical care and provide additional awareness. Prevention is key when dealing with cancer, thus any possible preventative measures can be beneficial. If you choose to do routine self-exams, it is suggested that you first speak to your physician, at length, to ensure you are correctly applying techniques. You should also wait a period of 3 to 5 days -unless otherwise suggested by your doctor- after your period to test your breasts. The overall value of doing self-test breast exams is indeed debated, though professionals tend to hold them as a viable option for detection.

1. Lie on your back, placing your right hand behind your head. Using your left hand, follow the motions in the chart below in examining your breasts. You should be feeling for any unusual thick or lumpy area. Repeat the process, switching hands, for your left breast.

2. Sit-up and begin to examine the area under the armpit. As archived by the National Library of Medicine, many may fail to realize that breast tissue extends under the armpit. Do not skip this step of examination.

3. Stand in front of a mirror and do a visual inspection of the breasts. You should look out for any unusual lumps, indentations, warping of skin, or odd changes in the shape of the nipple or discharged fluid. If you observe any change that is of concern, set up an appointment with your doctor.

When dealing with the possibility of cancer, there is no such thing as having irrelevant questions or concerns. Men should also be aware of the incidence of male breast cancer. Do not dismiss any changes you are concerned about. Discussion with a doctor, along with mammograms (especially if you are over 40), are great steps to prevention, early detection, and your quality of life."

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