19 Oct We’re all pink!
You probably know that October is breast cancer awareness month. There have been very successful pink campaigns over the last few years that have raised awareness of the disease, but more importantly, of the strides being made to treat and even prevent it. Breast cancer affects all of us. It knows no age, race or gender. It might affect you because you contract it or because a loved one is diagnosed with it. Did you know that 1 in 8 women has a chance of being diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime? Did you know that 200,000 women get breast cancer each year, and 40,000 don’t survive? These are scary facts, and there’s no point in sugar-coating them. But, there’s a lot of research going on to find treatments and cures, and a lot of progress is being made.
As we discover more and more about the various forms of breast cancer, it’s been found that some forms can even be successfully treated with a course of medicines! That’s why continued research is so important and why during October, we’ll be contributing $100 to the National Breast Cancer Foundation for every physical at Crossover. It’s one of the ways in which we can all join the fight.
An Ounce of Prevention is Worth….
You’ve already seen how much we are into prevention at Crossover. We’re keen on helping you be aware of and taking charge of your own health. It’s the most effective way to stay well. The awareness can help you live a healthy lifestyle and importantly, help you get to know your body well enough to help detect and address health issues before they become serious.
Awareness. A focus on healthy living. Prevention. Early detection. These are some of the most important tools in our fight against breast cancer. It helps to be familiar with your family history and learn if any family members have been diagnosed with breast cancer. It’s also important to live a healthy lifestyle. Exercise, limit the amount of alcohol you drink and do your best to manage your weight.
Of course, your doctor can help with screening mammograms. The US Preventive Services Task Force recommends a mammogram every two years if you’re over 50, and suggests you consult with your doctor about frequency if you’re between 40-49. And it’s recommended that every woman after the age of 20 have a clinical breast exam at least once every three years. What’s good about these regular exams is not only the peace-of-mind they can provide but also how they can give you the knowledge to perform a self-exam on yourself.
Monthly Breast Self-Exams
We’re happy to help walk you through the best way to do a breast self-exam. You can do a breast self-exam lying down in bed, although the shower is better. Wherever you are most comfortable, the really important thing is that you do it. So where do you check?
- Outside: armpit to collarbone, and below breast
- Middle: the breast itself
- Inside: the nipple area
Things to look for after you shower:
- Liquid coming from nipples.
- Puckering of the skin.
- Redness or swelling.
- Change in size or shape.
Your self-exam is all about getting to know what’s normal for your breasts. Be assured that most breast lumps are not cancer and that many conditions can cause lumps, but if something does not feel normal, come see your doctor at Crossover Health.
We’re Here for You
We’ve talked about taking charge. Well, we can help with that, with services that can help you manage your risk of being diagnosed with breast cancer, even if you have your own family physician.
Your health coach can help you develop a personalized fitness and nutrition plan that will help you achieve and maintain a healthy weight. Our team of health coaches consists of health educators, dieticians, registered nurses and fitness specialists who are committed to helping you achieve your best you.
A health screening is a quick appointment with a doctor to get a general idea of your overall health. It can help you identify areas of risk for major illness by measuring things like blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar, and body mass index (BMI). Or if you’d prefer, you can also schedule your complete annual physical exam through one of our board-certified physicians.
Even if you already have a relationship with a primary care physician or gynecologist, Crossover Health can assist you in coordinating any needed care. From scheduling mammograms to specialist referrals, we’re here to make your wellness experience better. To get started, schedule an appointment with one of our board-certified physicians or contact us.
Guys! Pay attention!
Breast cancer is most commonly diagnosed in women, but men are also at risk. Studies by the National Cancer Institute suggest breast cancer is diagnosed in less than one percent of men; however, exposure to radiation, high levels of estrogen, and a family history of breast cancer can increase a man’s risk of breast cancer. Because men are less likely to visit the doctor until more severe symptoms occur, it is not uncommon for breast cancer to have already spread at the time of diagnosis. Next time you’re in for an appointment or for a health screening, ask us about the risks. Because guys can think pink too.
We may give breast cancer a real focus in October but we really should all be thinking pink twelve months a year. Because we think cancer should just be a word, not a sentence.