October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and East Riding residents are being encouraged to recognise the signs and symptoms of breast cancer.
Whatever your age, size or shape, it’s important to look after your breasts by being aware of what to look and feel for.
Here is a list of common signs and symptoms to be aware of:
- a change in size or shape
- a lump in your breast or armpit
- a change in the texture or appearance of your breast
- redness or a rash on the skin or around the nipple
- nipple inversion
- nipple discharge
- pain in your breast or armpit
- swelling in your armpit or collarbone
Councillor Jane Evison, portfolio holder for transforming lifestyles at East Riding of Yorkshire Council, said: “Many of us are busy with our hectic lives, but it only takes a few seconds to check the health of your breasts.
“Finding out about changes to your breasts early can make all the difference if it does turn out to be something more serious.”
How to check your breasts
Check your breasts regularly so you know what is normal for you. Do this when you’re in the shower, or getting dressed or moisturising etc. to get into the habit of checking.
Remember to check all parts of your breast, your armpits and up to your collarbone. You should check for lumps, changes to shape and for feelings of tenderness, and all of the points mentioned above.
Breast Cancer in men
Men can get breast cancer but it’s very rare. Both men and women have breast tissue, although men have much smaller amounts than women.
The most common symptom is a lump. This is often painless and is usually close to the nipple, because most of the breast tissue in men is beneath the nipple. However, lumps can also occur away from the nipple.
Other symptoms of male breast cancer can include:
- liquid (discharge) that comes from the nipple without squeezing, often blood-stained
- a tender or inverted (pulled in) nipple
- ulcers (sores) on the chest or nipple area
- swelling of the chest area and occasionally the lymph nodes (glands) under the arm
What do I do next?
If you do notice a change in your breasts – both men and women - go and see your GP as soon as you can. Most breast changes are normal breast changes or due to a benign (not cancer) breast condition, but it’s important to find out what’s causing the change.
The sooner breast cancer is diagnosed and treated, the better the outcome may be.
For more information visit www.breastcancercare.org.uk
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