Every year, one month is taken and dedicated to the goal of increasing awareness and support for breast cancer across the nation. This year is no different as we take October to celebrate breast cancer awareness month in the United States. As the second leading cause of death among women, it is important for all to be educated and informed and work together for early detection and treatment. It would probably only take you a few seconds to think of someone in your family or a close friend who has suffered from or is currently fighting breast cancer. With one in eight women in the United States facing a diagnosis of breast cancer, this disease is very real and affects the lives of millions of wives, mothers, daughters and their families and friends every year.
It is important to take some time to remind ourselves and also spread the word to all the women in our lives concerning the importance of screening, early detection and promoting healthy habits. While some risk factors for breast cancer are genetic and out of your control, you can reduce your risk of cancer by sticking to some healthy habits. These lifestyle choices include maintaining a healthy weight, staying physically active, getting a diet full of fruits and vegetables, not smoking, and limiting your alcohol consumption. Of course, you can not prevent breast cancer, but living a healthy lifestyle can play a large role in reducing your risk for not only cancer, but many other diseases as well.
What else should we be reminding and encouraging the women in our lives to do concerning early detection and screening for breast cancer? At least monthly, women should be performing self-exams to detect any changes or lumps in their breasts and every year women should be seeing their physician for a clinical exam. To remind yourself of monthly exams, use your calendar or phone to ensure that you do not forget this important screening step. By maintaining a healthy lifestyle and participating in monthly and yearly screening, you can do your part in greatly reducing your risk of breast cancer. While you’re at it, don’t forget to remind those women in your sphere of influence to join you!
There are many resources available to learn more about breast cancer including signs and symptoms, risk factors, types of breast cancer, diagnosis and treatment. We encourage you to take time during the month of October to learn some facts about breast cancer and continue to be an advocate for screening and early detection and living an overall healthy lifestyle. Only by working together can we bring the breast cancer rates down. Some online resources available include the American Cancer Society and The National Breast Cancer Foundation as places to go and gain more information. There are also many walks and events throughout the year where you can join with others in the goal of reducing the cases of breast cancer across the United States.
For more information about Activate Allen County and if you have any questions please call our office at 419-221-5035.