Yesterday marked the end of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. I’m writing this post today to remind us all that we need to be cognizant at all times. According to the CDC, breast cancer is the most common form of cancer in women and the second most common cause of cancer death in white, black, Asian/Pacific Islander and American Indian/Alaskan Native women. And while white women have the highest rates of incidence, black women have the highest rates of death of any group.
Just thinking the words BREAST CANCER (CANCER, period) is scarey, but we must take care of ourselves. The best way to do that is through a healthy diet, regular check-ups and mammograms. The CDC recommends that women 40 and older get a mammogram every one to two years.
Mammograms are the best tests doctors have to find breast cancer early–sometimes as early as three years before it can be felt by a self-exam or a clinical exam. THREE YEARS! And early detection and action, of course, can mean the odds of your surviving the disease are greatly increased. Mammograms can reduce the number of deaths from breast cancer.
And, yes, men get breast cancer too. In 2005 (the most recent year stats are available), 1,764 men were diagnosed with breast cancer and 375 of them died from the disease.
For more information, got to: http://www.cdc.gov/cancer/breast/index.htm. If you can’t afford a mammogram, go here: http://www.cdc.gov/cancer/nbccedp/ This website will direct you to clinics in your state that offer low cost or free mammograms.
Happy new month, people, and let’s take care of ourselves!