Breast Cancer - Top ten things every woman should know

Breast cancer is a reality many women will have to deal with. Statistics show that one woman out of nine will develop breast cancer in her life. Whether it be a dear friend, a close family member or herself, every woman will be touched by breast cancer in one way or the other. Breast cancer accounts for about 30% of all cancers.

Every woman should be aware of the risk factors and change those she can to lower her risk of developing breast cancer in her life.

1) Women who are not active physically, smoke or consume a lot of alcohol are at higher risk to develop breast cancer.
2) Women who have their first child at a later age or have never given birth are at higher risk to develop breast cancer.
3) Women who had their first period at an earlier age (less than 12 years old) are at higher risk for breast cancer.
4) Woman who have close family members who had developed breast cancer are at higher risk themselves.
5) Women who are older. The further a woman advances in life, the higher her probability of developing breast cancer.
6) Women who experience a late menopause (after 55 years old) have an increased risk of developing breast cancer.

There is hope, however, and certain measures have proven to help reduce the risk of developing breast cancer for a woman. It is recommended to exercise regularly, lose any excess weight, lower alcohol consumption and stop smoking. It is also proven that women who breastfeed their babies are at lower risks to developing breast cancer.

Certain measures, by finding breast cancer at an earlier stage can lower the complication rate and morbidity associated with this condition. The two most recommended measures are to do a mammogram exam every two years after the age of 50 (or earlier if a woman has risk factors) and doing a breast self-examination. It is also recommended for a woman to visit her doctor regularly. One has to know that about two-thirds of breast tumours are found by the woman herself upon doing her self-examination.

Many organizations and industries have joined forces to push back breast cancer and one can only encourage them by donating time or money for this worthy cause. There are many researches on breast cancer conducted worldwide and it is expected that the near future will see a decline of this devastating affliction.

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