Though most of us will have healthy breasts throughout our lives, we can’t escape the fact that breast cancer is the most common cancer in the UK. Most women who are diagnosed with breast cancer are over 50, but it can also affect younger women. Men can get breast cancer, but it is much more common in women, therefore it is vital that we regularly check our breasts for any signs, and if there are any changes, to visit the doctor immediately.
Around one in eight women is diagnosed with breast cancer, but if it is detected early there is a good chance of recovery.
What are the symptoms of breast cancer?
Breast cancer can have a number of symptoms, but the first noticeable symptom is usually a lump or area of thickened breast tissue.
Most breast lumps aren’t cancerous, but it’s always best to have them checked by your doctor.
You should also see your GP if you notice any of the following:
- a change in the size or shape of one or both breasts
- discharge from either of your nipples, which may be streaked with blood
- a lump or swelling in either of your armpits
- dimpling on the skin of your breasts
- a rash on or around your nipple
- a change in the appearance of your nipple, such as becoming sunken into your breast
Breast pain isn’t usually a symptom of breast cancer.
How do you check your breasts?
Once you know what to look out for, it is much easier to check for any symptoms. Many women over 50 go to NHS breast screenings, though some do not attend, and if you are under 50, you need to look for symptoms yourself.
Some of us aren’t sure how to check our breasts efficiently, which is where Breastlight comes in handy. Breastlight is a new innovative product designed to help women check their breasts in the comfort of their own home. The product is a self-examination device that helps to find any abnormalities that may need to be looked at by a GP.
Designed to be used frequently at home, Breastlight is able to detect any unusual changes in breasts that could be symptoms of breast cancer. It works by shining a harmless red light through the breast tissue so you can see what is going on inside (something you can’t do by feeling alone). Through use of the Breaslight you will be able to clearly see if there are any significant changes to your breasts both on the inside and out, giving you the freedom to take control of your screenings. Of course, if invited to a breast screening by the NHS you should still attend, as no product can give you advice more accurately than a doctor.
*This is a collaborative post with Breastlight, but this is a cause that I feel truly passionate about and we should all keep an eye on our breast health.*