Defend Yourself Against Breast Cancer

Although the causes of breast cancer are still not completely understood, it remains a fact that anyone can get breast cancer, including men. Affecting the lives of men and women, breast cancer, if not caught and treated early, can be fatal. While there is no one way to prevent breast cancer, there are things that you can do to help your chances of not getting it and if caught early, increasing your chances of survival.

Generally, eating healthy, exercising, limiting your alcoholic intake, and not smoking are the best ways to help prevent breast cancer. Many women who have a history of breast cancer in their families take an anti-estrogen drug called tamoxifen. Research has indicated that how long a woman is exposed to estrogen may have something to do with breast cancer, as well as how old she was when giving birth to her first child. Therefore, by giving her an anti-estrogen pill, it may reduce the risk.

A woman must always be aware of the possibility of developing breast cancer and the best method of early detection is conducting regular breast self-exams. This will help you to discover any changes to the look and feel of your breasts. These self-exams should begin by the age of twenty and be done every month, a few days after your period. If you’ve already gone through menopause, conduct the exam on the same day of each month and if you are unsure of how to do one, your physician will be able to teach you.

A clinical breast exam, performed by your physician, should be done at least every three years until the age of thirty-nine and then you should increase the schedule to once every year. The clinical exam will help keep track of any changes that may have occurred or any lumps that you may not notice while conducting the self-exam.

If over the age of forty, a woman should schedule a mammogram once a year. This is an x-ray that can discover breast cancer or lumps that can not be detected by touch. If you have a history of breast cancer in your family, discuss this with your physician and you may decide together that starting yearly mammograms early may be the best route for you.

Due to the fact that anyone, at any age, can be diagnosed with breast cancer, it is very important to be educated on early detection. By doing breast self-exams, visiting your physician regularly, and doing the yearly mammograms, you detect breast cancer early and greatly increase your chance of survival.

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