The pink ribbon of Breast Cancer Awareness Month is recognized around the world, and while it should be a major talking point in communities across the globe, there are still millions of women who don’t fully understand the gravity of the situation. Sadly, signs of breast cancer still go unnoticed until it's too late, causing the death of nearly 45,000 women each year and leaving hundreds of thousands more vulnerable. There are millions of new cases around the world detected each year, and while not all cases of breast cancer can be cured, early detection is the key to increased survival rates, which is why spreading awareness about the disease is so important. During the month of October, you can easily learn about the different breast cancer causes and prevention, including information about how to check yourself for the signs of breast cancer and other important facts that could help save your life.
Cancer occurs when cells start to multiply uncontrollably, but doctors don’t know exactly why this occurs. However, there are several factors that are often associated with breast cancer. While both males and females can develop breast cancer in their mammary glands, women are far more likely to develop the disease. For many women, the cancer is often hereditary, with it running throughout the family. As you age, your chances for developing breast cancer also increase. Because there’s no singular cause, breast cancer prevention is dependent on early detection.
The best form of breast cancer prevention is a self-exam, a regular check of your own breasts to notice any changes that could be signs of breast cancer. Performing a self-check once a month will help you notice the development of any lumps or the thickening of tissue. As you check yourself, pay attention to the overall color of the breast, and check the nipple for any peeling, scaling, crusting or flaking. At the age of 40, women are encouraged to get annual mammograms to help detect signs of breast cancer.
In addition to knowing these breast cancer causes and prevention methods, knowing some breast cancer awareness month facts will help you remember to regularly check yourself and help educate others.
Breast Cancer Awareness Month was founded in 1985.
It started with a partnership between the American Cancer Society of the pharmaceutical division of Imperial Chemical Industries.
Betty Ford, who was diagnosed with breast cancer during her husband’s presidency, helped with the inaugural events of the first Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Estée Lauder helped launch the first nation-wide pink ribbon campaign to bring awareness to the disease.
The NFL has become one of the biggest supporters of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and as you watch games, you’ll see players, coaches, and referees wearing pink ribbons.
While these Breast Cancer Awareness Month facts are interesting, knowing how to check yourself and what to look for is the most important part of this campaign.
While fundraising events can be a fun time and the pink ribbon has become very popular, saving lives through breast cancer prevention is at the heart of this campaign. Through education and funding, thousands of lives can be saved. Taking time to learn how to perform a self-exam and knowing what to look for could help save your life or the life of a loved one.