Things have been CRAZY in our household lately! Things should be returning to "normal" shortly, I hope. That said, I had a spare moment today and thought I'd give a quick "hi" to our little blog here. Guys, be warned, this post might make you uncomfortable. I hope, for the sake of any woman in your life and possibly yourself, you can manage.
Today I wanted to discuss a topic dear to my heart: breast cancer. My great-grandmother died from this disease, as well as many other wonderful women that have been part of my life, one way or another. (It should be noted that men CAN get breast cancer as well, but I have not had personal experience with that situation.)Let's get personal: have you done your monthly self-exam? Do you know how to do a self-exam properly?
Taking a few minutes to do a breast self-exam a minimum of once a month can make a lifetime of difference. Nearly 70% of all breast cancers are found through self-exams and with early detection the 5-year survival rate is 98%. If you find a lump, schedule an appointment with your doctor, but don't panic. 8 out of 10 lumps are not cancerous. For additional peace of mind, call your doctor whenever you have concerns.
HOW TO DO A BREAST SELF-EXAM
In the Shower
Fingers flat, move gently over every part of each breast. Use your right hand to examine the left breast, left hand for the right breast. Check for any lump, hard knot, or thickening. Carefully observe any changes in your breasts.
Before a Mirror
Inspect your breasts with your arms at your sides. Next, raise your arms high overhead.
Look for any changes in the contour of each breast, a swelling, a dimpling of the skin, or changes in the nipples. Then rest your palms on your hips and press firmly to flex your chest muscles. Left and right breasts will not exactly match—few women's breasts do.
Place a pillow under your right shoulder and put your right arm behind your head. With the fingers of your left hand flat, press your right breast gently in small circular motions, moving vertically or in a circular pattern covering the entire breast.
Use light, medium, and firm pressure. Squeeze the nipple; check for discharge and lumps. Repeat these steps for your left breast.
(Material on this page courtesy of Tennessee Breast Center, Inc.
Copyright ©2002 by Arts Uniq®, Cookville, TN.)
Want to get involved in supporting breast cancer awareness? Hallee at Halleethehomemaker.com has a great post today on a cute (yummy recipe included!) way to help raise funds! http://http//www.halleethehomemaker.com/2010/08/pasta-for-your-girls-and-mine/