In the last few years, there has been a growing awareness of the health issues of women. Aspects like reproductive well-being, mental health, and various forms of cancer have grown in prominence.
Breast Cancer is one area where a lot of international institutions have taken the lead in spreading awareness. Doctors too have started recommending that women should undertake regular self-examinations at home to look out for any early warning signs.
This is one reason why it is necessary to carry on with regular breast examinations at home. It can help you identify something unnatural and allow you to get the best medical help possible.
In this article, we take help from leading doctors at the Thomson Breast Centre. We ask them to help us understand the basics of breast examination at home. This article is intended to help women spot early signs of breast cancer.
Breast Cancer: What you need to know
According to a leading international institution that studies cancer statistics, there are an estimated 300,000 new cases of breast cancer in 2021. Additionally, more than 45,000 women have lost their lives to the illness.
Data suggests that breast cancer is the second most common form of cancer that affects women. It is also one of the leading forms of death in women, only second to heart diseases.
Most health experts believe that it is essential to catch any irregularities early on. The earlier you catch cancer, the higher are the chances for successful recovery. Care should be taken to ensure that the responsibility for the same does not lie with women alone.
The male members of the family should encourage women to look after their health. This includes reminding women to take regular self-examination tests and schedule a meeting with doctors at regular intervals.
Breast Examination at Home: How you should do it?
According to doctors, women should be doing a breast examination analysis once every month. Of all the reported breast cancers, nearly 40% have been identified by women who have done regular self-examinations.
Women should use their fingers and eyes to conduct an examination. Three fingers need to be uniformly used to feel the entire breast, chest, and armpit areas of the body for-
- Any hard or soft lumps
- Any tissue thickening
- Any knot like formations
By applying soft pressure on the three areas, any warning signs need to be detected. If you spot a lump, do not worry, it might not be cancerous. On average, eight out of ten lumps are not cancerous in nature. However, care should be taken to report any abnormalities to the doctor.
This should become a part of your habit and should be done once every month. You can set an alarm for the same on your smartphone.
Three Places where a Breast Examination should be performed-
- Shower or Washroom-
A shower is a good place to do a breast examination. After you have taken a warm shower, you can easily run your three fingers over the breast, lower neck, armpits, and the side of your body. The warm water helps the cells to soften up, allowing you to do an examination.
- Standing in the Mirror-
The eyes can play a critical role in helping you spot any irregularities. You can use a full-length mirror and do a breast examination. Both tough and sight can play an important role in helping you understand whether everything is alright or something needs to be reported.
- Laying on the Bed-
Sometimes, doctors state that lumps might not be felt while being in a standing position. In such cases, laying down and doing the examination can be helpful. It can allow the body to be in a shape where it would be comfortable for you to spot any signs of breast cancer.
The Bottom Line
By being careful and looking after our health, we can be in a much more protective and preventive state for issues like breast cancer. If you have any more questions, you would like our experts at Thomson Breast Centre to answer, let us know in the comments section below. We will be more than happy to guide and issue as many clarifications as possible.