It’s October. That means pink and lots of it. This is the month our awareness level is raised concerning breast cancer. And while we may be an emergency center and performing mammograms is not what we do, we still wish to help promote the message to women everywhere that waiting is never the right answer.
There are many women here in Southeast Texas who have never had a mammogram or even performed a self-check. Others, perhaps, have just let too much time lapse since their last one.
Reasons and excuses abound, but at the end of the day, this simple procedure holds, for many, the power of life or death.
According to FRi Diagnostic Imaging in Florida there are 6 common reasons women give for not getting a mammogram.
- A mammogram takes too long and they don’t have time
- Mammograms cost too much
- Mammograms are painful
- Fear of finding something
- The radiation from a mammogram can cause cancer
- Mammograms are for older women
When it comes to your life, how much time, money, or discomfort is it worth?
All women over the age of 40 should schedule an appointment with their doctor to receive this x-ray picture of their breast. That’s what a mammogram is; a simple x-ray. It allows your doctor to detect tumors that cannot be felt by a simple self-examination.
That being said, if you have noticed a lump on your breast you should consult a physician immediately.
Other potential warning signs are:
- Pain in your breast
- Thickening of the skin around your breast
- Nipple discharge
- A change in the size or shape of your breast
Remember that early detection is the key. This does not automatically mean a complete recovery. The types of cancer can vary and some are more aggressive than others. But without a doubt, waiting until tomorrow does not increase your chances of beating the disease once it appears.
Mammograms are available from breast clinics, hospitals, private radiology offices, and doctor’s offices. Even if you are not at risk you should consult with your doctor and schedule an exam if you are over the age of 40.
Make this October the month where you take your personal awareness level where it needs to be.