October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, so it’s the perfect time to make sure your own breasts are healthy.
Breast cancer is the most common form of cancer in the UK with 1 in 7 women developing it during their lifetime. There are many different signs and symptoms of breast cancer, so regularly checking your breasts for anything different or new is important.
The earlier breast cancer is diagnosed, the better the chance of successful treatment. You can check your breasts yourself and should try to do this every month. Getting to know what your breasts look and feel like normally means it’s easier to spot any unusual changes and check them with your doctor.
Look out for these signs and get them checked by a Doctor:
A lump or swelling in the breast, upper chest or armpit. You might feel the lump, but not see it
Changes in the size or shape of the breast
A change in skin texture i.e. puckering or dimpling of the skin
A change in the colour of the breast – the breast may look red or inflamed
Rash, crusting or changes to the nipple
Any unusual discharge from either nipple
Women aged 50 and over are also invited for a breast screening at hospital every 3 years. This guide explains what will happen at your screening and gives further advice about breast cancer: Easy Read Breast Cancer, Checks and Screening
Your Annual Health Check is an opportunity to get your breasts checked by a doctor or nurse.
Everybody aged 14 and over with a learning disability should have an Annual Health Check at their GP surgery every year. As well as breast checks, you can get help with any other health concerns and make sure you are staying as well as possible.
Sheffield Mencap can support you to attend your Annual Health Check and make sure you feel comfortable. Check out our Annual Health Check page here to find out more.
This October, be breast cancer aware and feel yourself!