When it comes to cancer prevention, doing a regular breast exam is critical. Breast cancer is frighteningly too common, and catching it early can literally save your life. One out of eight women in the United States develop breast cancer. Fortunately there are ways to avoid being a statistic and beat the disease, should you or someone you love fall victim.
There are number things you can do to prevent breast cancer, such as staying physically active and living an all-around healthy lifestyle, but in some cases there are risks that cannot be controlled – such as your age. Early detection, no matter the cause, will help you win the battle.
The American Cancer Society reports that, excluding skin cancer, breast cancer is the most frequently diagnosed cancer among women in the United States and is the leading cause of cancer death among women ages 40 to 54.
“Breast cancer survival is linked directly to early detection,” says Connie Ziegfeld, a registered nurse at Johns Hopkins Avon Foundation Breast Center in Baltimore. “If it’s found early, it’s less likely to have spread and more curable with less invasive treatment.”
Early detection is key to survival, and the need for follow-up care such as chemotherapy or radiation. How can you detect if you have or are developing breast cancer? By regularly examining your own breasts, along with scheduling an annual examination with your doctor.
The video below demonstrates how to properly perform a self breast exam.