Breast cancer prevention is relevant beyond the month of October. Discover year-round prevention tips!
As we enter Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we can expect to see prevention tips and statistics around breast cancer widely shared to help raise awareness on the impact of breast cancer and the importance of breast screenings. However, there are steps to prevent breast cancer year-round, beyond the month of October.
Every October, we watch organizations across the country turn pink in support of breast cancer awareness. Although it’s great to see the rally of support of hundreds of thousands getting together to help spread the word about the impact breast cancer has made on society through things like parades, walks, and seminars, there are ways to decrease the risk of breast cancer and improve overall health all year.
What is Breast Cancer?
All women and men’s bodies have at least a small amount of breast tissue or cells. Breast Cancer is a disease where the cells in the breast grow out of control, or there is an uncontrollable overgrowth of malignant cells. There are multiple types of breast cancer, with the diagnoses and prognosis made based on the specific cancerous breast cells. According to MD Anderson Cancer Center, there are about 275,000 breast cancer diagnoses in the US yearly, with a five-year survival rate to 90% of cases.
Year-Round Prevention Tips
Researchers are still working to fully understand breast cancer to better prevent the disease, but common risk factors have been identified. Knowing how to prevent the risks decreases the chance of breast cancer and helps promote an overall healthier lifestyle.
Move Your Body and Exercise Regularly
Incorporating consistent physical activity into your daily routine is linked to a decreased cancer risk and creates an overall healthier lifestyle. This can be any form of exercise, from a daily brisk walk or intense circuit-style weight training. You will reap the benefits of any movement that consistently gets your heart rate up.
Maintain a Healthy Weight
Increased body weight and excessive weight gain are linked to breast cancer, with an even higher risk for women after menopause. Maintaining a healthy weight throughout life with regular exercise and monitoring food intake helps decrease risk of cancer.
Choose Your Foods Carefully
It is important to note that there is no correlation between breast cancer and specific foods. However, research has found that eating the suggested daily servings of fruit and vegetables is known to decrease your risk for cancer and improve overall body health.
Know Your Family History
It is important to know the history of cancer on your maternal and paternal side to help guide the conversation with your doctor on your chance of developing breast cancer and how you may prevent the disease. Your doctor will use this information to provide the appropriate screening and lifestyle adjustments.
At-Home Self Breast Exams
Breast cancer looks different in each person diagnosed. There may be similar symptoms, but you know how your breasts feel and look. You are the key to catching an early diagnosis. It is important to perform at-home self-breast examinations monthly to look for any abnormal changes. Breast cancer symptoms may include:
- Lump or mass in breast or armpit
- Breast skin change in color or texture
- Discharge from the nipple
- Swelling of the breast
It is important to note that these symptoms do not always mean breast cancer is present. Visit your physician to discuss symptoms and concerns to receive an accurate diagnosis.
If you are in a medical emergency or concerned about your health, Alexandria Emergency Hospital is open 24/7/365 to provide the expert care needed to feel better quicker! No matter the illness or injury, our staff quickly initiates advanced treatment to relieve your symptoms. Come on into your neighborhood emergency room.
We show our support this Breast Cancer Awareness Month by promoting overall health and wellness year-round!
Disclaimer: As a service to our readers, Alexandria Emergency Hospital and Nutex Health state no content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.