October comes with a ton of great things. Of course, everyone’s favorite: the start of the NHL season. But then there’s Halloween, pumpkin-flavored everything, sweater weather, and Breast Cancer Awareness month. Since this is a “pink” website, we could all take a few minutes to appreciate the “pink” month.
Just to throw out a few quick stats about breast cancer, according to nationalbreastcancer.org:
- 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer at some point in her life.
- Breast cancer is the second leading cause of death among women.
- Each year it is estimated that over 220,000 women in the United States will be diagnosed with breast cancer and more than 40,000 will die.
One of the most important things for women of any age is to perform monthly self-exams. It’s never too early to start! There are a bunch of helpful resources online, but this one has a ton of great tips on how to do a self-exam and what to expect from clinical exams (which all girls should start at 20-years-old).
If it’s any incentive to do monthly self-exams, there’s this shirtless-man-filled app called “Rethink Breast Cancer”, which all girls should definitely download ASAP. Every so often (you can set the reminders for weekly, monthly, or surprise) a half naked guy will remind you when it’s time to do an exam. And here’s a video to prove it. Seriously, it’s worth a watch. Or six.
And if you’re not into the whole naked-guy thing, there’s a more conventional app called “Early Detection Plan”, which is essentially the same concept but with more info and less abs. Or for the even more traditional, you can always just write it down in a calendar every month. Or put it in your phone calendar. Or take turns with friends reminding each other (sorta like a Save the Tatas Club). Whichever method you chose, it’s time to get down to business and start protecting the girls.
Some warning signs to look for (Susan G. Koman):
- A lump, hard knot or thickening
- Swelling, warmth, redness or darkening
- Change in breast size or shape
- Dimpling or puckering of the skin
- Itchy, scaly sore or rash on the nipple
- Pulling in of your nipple or other parts of the breast
- Nipple discharge that starts suddenly
- New pain in one spot
If you happen to find any of these signs (or anything else you think is a little funky), get to a doctor and have them check it out. It can’t hurt to be safe.
So, use the remainder of October to pink-out everything to support breast cancer and girls everywhere!
Photo courtesy of http://uafcornerstone.net/perfect-present