It’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and while that might not mean much to some, to millions of women around the world, breast cancer is one of life’s most serious obstacles. The disease, which takes the lives of thousands each year, is one of the most common forms of cancer affecting women around the world in this day and age. Its prevalence makes breast cancer awareness more important than ever, and while treatments are available, breast cancer prevention is dependent on the sharing of knowledge and early detection, which is why breast cancer awareness month facts are so readily available during this time. It is the goal of various organizations to arm the public with the power of knowledge so that incidences of the disease can be detected early on, giving the warriors who deal with the diagnosis a better shot at survival. Here is everything you need to know about October breast cancer awareness month and the disease that affects so many.
Breast Cancer is the most prevalent form of cancer affecting women throughout the world. It is a disease that involves the excessive growth of malignant cells in the lobules, ducts, or connective tissues of the breast. When left untreated, breast cancer can become fatal. In addition, these cells can spread to other areas of the body, causing various forms of cancer to take over in a single patient's body. There are numerous kinds of breast cancer, but the two most common forms include invasive ductal carcinoma and invasive lobular carcinoma. In both instances, cancer cells spread from one part of the breast to the surrounding tissues, resulting in a systemic takeover.
October breast cancer awareness month was established in 1985 with the intent of spreading information that might help to reduce deaths associated with the disease and to raise funds to help those in need. Every year since, diverse organizations have used breast cancer awareness month as an opportunity to educate both men and women about the importance of early detection and maintaining breast health. It is during this month that fundraising campaigns bring in their largest contributions and breast cancer awareness month facts can be found with ease.
October breast cancer awareness month is a great time to brush up on the facts, but breast health should be a priority throughout the year for both men and women. Here are a few breast cancer awareness month facts you should know:
1 in 8 women in the United States will be diagnosed with some form of invasive breast cancer in her lifetime. This number varies per country, but not by much.
While rates have decreased over the years, just under 3% of women diagnosed with breast cancer will die from the disease (rates vary widely among different regions of the world, different age groups, and among women of different racial backgrounds).
A woman’s risk of developing breast cancer is doubled when an immediate relative, such as a sister or mother, has been diagnosed with the disease. Although, around 85% of cases develop in women who have no family history of the disease.
Breast cancer survival rates range from 40% in low income countries to 80% in more developed parts of the world. Survival is almost always connected to early detection and proper treatment.
Contrary to what some might believe, breast cancer prevention isn’t just an important issue for women. It is a disease that affects men as well, albeit in much smaller quantities. The importance of early detection is vital in ensuring recovery and working ahead of time to reduce your risk is equally important.
Doing some form of physical activity at least three times a week, even if it’s just a brisk walk that gets your heartrate up, reduces your chance of developing breast cancer by a considerable amount.
Taking care of your diet and eating a limited amount of fats helps to combat breast cancer because it decreases the estrogen production that encourages tumor growth.
Limiting your alcohol intake is a good way to reduce your risk of developing breast cancer. Alcohol, including beer, wine, and spirits, increases estrogen in your bloodstream, which is known to encourage the growth of tumors.
Both men and women should give themselves a self-exam at least once a month, looking for changes in the appearance, texture, and size of breast tissue. If differences are noted, make an appointment with your doctor to rule out any possible developments of the disease. In addition, women, who are much more prone to the disease, should have a physical with a doctor every year.