Be Breast Aware Whatever Your Age

Thursday, 4 May 2017

I recently visited my Doctor after finding a strange lump on my breast. As someone with major self-confidence issues and social anxiety, just attending a simple Dr's appointment and getting my boobs out for someone to look at was hugely scary. The Dr said she didn't think it felt like anything to worry about but the fact that there was obvious tissue change and an increase in pains in that one breast meant it was a good idea to be referred for a breast clinic appointment.




Last week I had my breast clinic appointment after a wait of just over a week. I won't lie, I was scared. Even if it wasn't cancer, it could be a cyst that needs draining or something else. I had also stupidly bathed with a glittery bath bomb the previous night so was dreading getting my glittery boobs out to more strangers. Thankfully my friend Hannah came along with me to help me not panic. I actually had nothing to panic about. The staff were lovely, no one was phased by my boobs, they clearly see enough of them every day and despite my usual anxiety, I really felt at ease. The nurse said the same as my doctor but sent me down for an ultrasound to be certain it was just hormonal tissue and after a short wait a doctor performed an ultrasound (which was so strange being used to seeing babies on them!). He told me that all looks completely normal and healthy and that was that. It was a huge weight off my mind and was so worth a small amount of discomfort to ensure that there was no cancerous cells.

Whilst there, I picked up a few leaflets with facts about Breast Cancer in the UK

  • 1 in 8 women in the UK will develop breast cancer in their lifetime.
  • Around a third of all new cancers diagnosed in women in the UK are breast cancer.
  • One person is diagnosed with breast cancer every 10 minutes.
  • Men get breast cancer too, though at a much lower rate than women.
  • 81% of breast cancers occur in women over the age of 50 but the number of younger women being diagnosed with breast cancer is at an all time high.
  • every month, approximately 1,000 people die of breast cancer but the good news is more people are surviving thanks to early detection and treatments.
It is so important to get any abnormalities checked straight away. Breast cancer is easily treated if found early. It is important to be aware of what is normal for you so that you can notice any sudden changes. 

Changes to check for

Touch Look Check

Touch

Feel for lumps, they can be found anywhere around the breast, upper chest or armpits. Is there a lumpy area? or thickening of tissue that doesn't go away? Have you been experiencing unusual pain in part of the breast or armpit? 

Look

Changes in size or appearance can be a sign such as one breast becoming larger or lower than the other. Changes in the texture of the skin such as puckering or dimpling of the skin. Change in colour like a sudden redness or inflammation. Appearance or direction of the nipple, one may become inverted (turned in) when it normally points out. Unusual discharge from one or both nipples or a rash or crusting around the nipple or surrounding area.

Check

If anything gives you reason to feel worried or nervous then get it checked out. If it is nothing, you are not wasting anyone's time. It is important to give yourself every chance of finding anything early rather than putting it off out of fear!

Women are only invited for regular screening after the age of 50 and facts show that cases in younger women are at an all time high. It is up to us to notice any changes and take ourselves to be properly screened. It takes just a few moments to check. Whether you check whilst lying down in bed or whilst in the shower, get into a routine of having a feel around regularly and talk about it! Encourage and remind your friends and family.

Here are just a few websites with plenty of information, help and support available:





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15 comments

  1. Really pleased that it all went so smoothly, Normal boobs are pretty cool but glittery boobs are bad ass. I'm glad all was okay x

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  2. Well, I'm really glad it turned out okay! I can only imagine what that level of worry must feel like!

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  3. I'm glad to hear everything's okay for you, but thank you for sharing such an informative and important post ♥

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  4. More women should go to their breast screening appointments with glittery boobs! I've had to get my lady lumps out for 2 separate doctors, one was because of a large lump in my armpit that was apparently down to deodorant getting stuck in my pores (never heard of it before but apparently it's a thing and boy does it hurt) and the other was due to inflammation. I panicked both times but it was so reassuring to have them checked out just in case. I think women are too self conscious to automatically go to the doctor when they notice a change in their breasts but it's so important that we do.

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  5. I had this recently too. It was scary but so important to get checked out by a professional.

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  6. I'm so glad everything was fine, i'd be just as worried to be honest! This is such an important post though, so thank you for sharing this!

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  7. I had a pretty much identical scenario when I was pregnant with my eldest. Pretty scary, but the doctors and nurses were amazing and it was all fine, thankfully. PS: had to giggle at the glitter boobs - what a treat for the medical staff! ;)

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  8. This is such an important message to share. I had a check after experiencing pain in my breast and the scan was so reassuring. Kaz

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  9. Such an informative post! My nan had breast cancer a few years ago, so we are much more aware of things to look out for now.

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  10. Glad that your change was nothing sinister and HELL YES to people becoming more aware about their breasts and any possible changes...

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  11. Well done you for going in. You could have worried about that for months and it would have been stress for no reason. I'm really glad you are okay and don't need any further treatment - sad to hear that figures are at an all-time high though :/

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  12. This is such an important topic. I'm so glad that women are finding it easier to talk about. I had a scare a while back when I found a lump but luckily was nothing . Scary stuff though

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  13. Great post - and thanks so much for telling your story. I happen to work for Breast Cancer Now who promote the TLC message of getting women to regularly check their breasts (looking and feeling for changes, and not just lumps), and getting anything out of the ordinary checked out with their GP. It's such an important message, particularly for pregnant women and mothers whose breasts are going through lots of changes anyway. It's certainly better to get something checked out than worry about it or ignore it.

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  14. Glad to read all was OK. Its so important to be breast aware, I had a similar scare a couple of years ago x

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  15. This is such an important issue to share. I have always checked ever since I could remember!!! Glad all is OK with you.

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