WHAT ALL WOMEN SHOULD KNOW ABOUT BREAST CANCER !
Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in women. Earlier detection through regular screening and awareness has believed to reduce the death rates from breast cancer. Though you don’t have the power to control your genes, there are important steps you can take to protect yourself prophylactically.
1,CLINICAL BREAST EXAMINATIONS
You should get a mammogram at the age of 40 or even earlier if you have a family history of breast cancer. But this could not be a perfect screening for those who have dense breasts hence you should get an annual clinical breast examination from a doctor. This can detect inflammatory breast cancer that can make the breast swollen and red (rare and aggressive type), which often cannot be detected in a mammogram. On the other hand, only mammogram is able to detect Ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), which is the initial form of breast cancer. Therefore both screenings are mandatory and should be done simultaneously.
2,SELF BREAST EXAMINATION
This should be preferably done every month and it can be done while you are showering, in front of a mirror and when lying down. This self-examination helps you to become familiar with what is normal for your breasts and when you feel a lump or something abnormal then you can notify your doctor about it as soon as possible.
3,WHEN YOU GET CALLED FOR REPEAT MAMMOGRAM
You do not have to be anxious if you get called for a repeat mammogram or your report shows calcifications. Most of the women who are over the age of 40 have calcium deposits in their breasts and mostly are not cancerous. According to Dr Lee, It’s a part of the aging process of the tissue and it shows as white spots on a mammogram. Usually the larger and solitary spots tend to be harmless however you have to be doubtful ifthe spots show clustering together in a linear pattern.
4,STAY AWAY FROM SOY SUPPLEMENTS
SeemaA.khan, MD, a professor of surgery and coleader of the breast cancer pogram at Northwestern University in Chicago explains that Soy contains isoflvones, which can act as estrogen in your body and potentially stimulate the growth of certain types of breast cancer. More concentrated does of isoflavones are found in supplements therefore experts suggest that you should avoid them however soy foods like soy milk, tofu are fine.
Research recommend adding leafy green vegetables, beans and fortified cereals in to your diet as it contains good amount of B vitamin folate. B vitamin folate may help lessen the increased risk associated with alcohol consumption. You must go easy on the alcohol because having 2 or more drinks a day increases the risk of breast cancer by 25%.
6,IMPORTANCE OF STAYING ACTIVE
Dr. Seewaldt explains that any type of exercise is likely to help by lowering estrogen levels. Exercising regularly has consistently been related with a lower risk of breast cancer. Studies have suggested that active women are less likely to develop breast cancer therefore girls keep on moving.
7,WEIGHT GAIN AFTER MENOPAUSE IS RISKY
If being healthy reduces the risk, being overweight is riskiest after menopause. When talking about breast cancer, it is the post-menopausal pounds that are dangerous in particular. Dr.Isaaes explains that in post- menopausal women, one of the most significant sources of estrogen comes from body fat.
Research has shown that women who have dense breasts can be six times more likely to develop breast cancer. Dense breasts have less fatty tissue and hormones are known to affect the breast density. A mammogram can measure the breast density through the thickness of the tissue.
9, FAMILY HISTORY OF CANCER
Biology is not associated with fate. According to Dr Lee, only 20-30 % or even smaller percentage of people develop breast cancer have a family history of the cancer.