According to the American Cancer Society, over 40,000 women will be killed from breast cancer this year. Women face a one-in-37 chance of dying from the disease, which according to statistics is the second-leading cause of cancer deaths behind lung cancer.
It’s important for women to constantly be aware of how their body is changing when they get older. Chances of being diagnosed with cancer increase with age, so it’s imperative that if you experience even the slightest bit of discomfort in the breast region, go see a doctor.
But there are many other signs and symptoms that can be detected without going to see the doctor. Read on to find out what they are.
Change in Breast Size or Shape: Breasts come in all different shapes and sizes – and can sometimes look and feel different throughout a woman’s life. They change when a woman’s going through pregnancy or when she gets her period.
For this precise reason, a woman should always be checking her breasts on a regular basis so she can detect when there is a change in size or shape that she is seeing for the first time.
Redness or Rash: Look for signs of a rash or redness around the nipple. This could be a cause of using a new washing powder, or a lacy bra irritating the skin.
But if this issue is ongoing and has not subsided, then this could be a more serious matter and you should take a trip to the doctor’s office to get checked out.
Nipple Discharge: If you are experiencing liquid coming out of the nipple without squeezing it, it’s important that you go see the doctor.
This can be a confusing sign for a lot of women, but if it’s something that has happened to you before, and you have been checked out by your doctor, then it’s alright.
Swelling in the Armpit or Around the Collarbone: Lumps are the most common sign of breast cancer, but they don’t always appear on the breast. You can find breast tissue under the armpit and the collarbone, so you could find swelling there.
So it’s important that when a woman is checking her breasts each month, do not ignore the armpit and the collarbone when you’re looking for something unusual.
Change in Skin Texture: Anything from puckering to the slightest hint of a dimple – changes in the texture of the skin on your breasts can be a sign of cancer.
For example, if it feels like the peel of an orange, it’s best that you go to the doctor and get it checked out. A recent survey indicates that one in six women had no idea that this was a sign of breast cancer.
An Inverted Nipple: Some people are just born with inverted nipples, and there is nothing wrong with that at all.
But, if your nipple suddenly begins to pull inwards, or changes its shape or position in any way, then this could be a breast cancer warning sign.
Constant Pain: A constant ache in the breast or armpit that won’t go away could be a sign of breast cancer. But this is very difficult to diagnose because it could be caused by a number of things that includes changing of hormones.
But if the pain does not subside after a reasonable amount of time, then you should go see your doctor and explain that the pain has not gone away.
Those are the most common signs of breast cancer that should never be ignored. The more you educate yourself about this disease, the more serious you’ll know it is. But it’s also important to stick together and talk to your friends and family for support and help.
To get yourself checked out, a doctor will usually administer a mammogram which is a machine that takes x-rays of your breasts. It’s the most efficient way to determine if someone has breast cancer.