October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month
This month we take time to reflect, learn, and bring awareness to the disease that affects thousands of women across the United States.
Unfortunately, breast cancer is all too common. One in every eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer during her lifetime, with about 42,000 women dying of this illness every single year. This illness can affect women of all ages; experts estimate that in 2020 alone, there will be over 272,000 new cases of invasive breast cancer, plus 48,530 new cases of non-invasive breast cancer.
For perspective, this means that on average, one woman is diagnosed with breast cancer every two minutes in the United States. These numbers are staggering, which makes it that much more important to understand the risk factors and symptoms of breast cancer in the hopes of early detection.
What Are the Risk Factors of Breast Cancer?
There is no one cause of breast cancer, but there are many things you can do to reduce your risk of acquiring the disease.
- Limit alcohol intake.
- Keep a healthy diet and exercise often.
- Know the risks that come with taking hormones, such as birth control.
- Being a carrier of the BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene.
What Are the Symptoms of Breast Cancer?
While no one woman is the same, some common symptoms of breast cancer include:
- A change in the size and shape of your breast.
- Finding a hard lump anywhere in the breast.
- Breast pain.
- Nipple discharge.
If you have breast cancer, it is important to alert any and all of your medical providers. This can be easy to do with American Medical ID’s medical alert bracelets, which will inform a medical professional if you have breast cancer or any other medical condition.
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