Much like finding a well-fitting bra or getting a smear test- checking our boobs is one of the things we must do as women. Ah, the joys. According to the Canadian Cancer Society’s 2019 predictive stats, 1 in 8 women are expected to be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. Each year in Canada, approximately 220 men will be diagnosed, so breast cancer is something that affects us all.
Talking about it and being able to identify symptoms quickly is key- and sharing tips on how to self-examine could save a friend, a colleague, and the girl we met in the nightclub bathroom. Cancer doesn’t discriminate against people with old boobs, young boobs, boob jobs, with children, without children, who breastfed, who didn't, but the signs and symptoms can certainly be recognized, caught early, and treated all the same.
Get out your girls, boobies, tatas, lady lumps, melons (or whatever great nickname you’ve given them) … it’s time to get up close and personal.
Here are 5 quick & easy checks you can do at home (whether you’ve had a boob job or not!)
1. Stand in front of a mirror or lay flat on your back
2. Use three middle fingers in a circular motion all the way around your boob, checking for lumps in the breast tissue. Start from a 12-o clock position and work your way to 9-o clock. The closer you feel towards the nipple, the more of your glands you will be able to feel and examine.
3. Make your way up to the armpit area and check the tissue around there. To make this check more noticeable, clench your fists together tightly in front of you until you can recognize the `V` shape of your large breast muscle. Like when a gym bro is showing off. You want to be feeling around the V and directly behind it. Your lymph nodes will feel like little peas on a string. Anything that feels off may warrant a visit to your doctor.
4. Feel around and on top of the nipple for lumps, and give them a gentle squeeze to check for discharge
5. Repeat each step for each boob
Remember, ladies, all of our bodies are different. All of our boobs are different and they say something different about each and every one of us. Get to know what your "normal" is, and compare your checks to that.
However, if you do think that something isn’t right, please go and get it checked out. Early breast cancer symptoms need to be picked up and picked up fast. It can save your life - literally! Ask someone in your family to come with you to your appointments for support.
Stay safe, stay aware, and most importantly, #FeelItOnTheFirst
Consider donating to my team, as I commit to get active and shake it every day in May to raise awareness and money to find a friggin cure: Donate or Join my team