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In my lifetime, I’ve had so many friends diagnosed with breast cancer. I’ve watched as they’ve struggled, battled and persevered through it all.
[tweetthis]October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.[/tweetthis]
As a way to honor all the women and men who have battled this disease, my friends will guest blog and share their stories throughout the month.
Breast Cancer By The Numbers
According to the American Cancer Society, every 2 minutes a woman in the United States is diagnosed with breast cancer. It includes everything from “stage zero” cancer (which some doctors believe shouldn’t even be called cancer) to the deadliest form: invasive breast cancer.
The cancer organization also estimates that 231,840 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed in women in the United States this year.
And an estimated 2,350 new cases will be diagnosed in men.
The International Agency for Research on Cancer, a part of the World Health Organization, estimated that in 2012, around 1.7 million new cases of breast cancer in women occurred worldwide.
These numbers speak to the need for early detection and screenings around the world.
According to the Food and Drug Administration, more than 39 million mammograms are performed each year in the United States.
[tweetthis]Have you scheduled your mammogram? [/tweetthis]
Mammograms may have had an impact because the numbers are headed down~
The American Cancer Society reports that the breast cancer death rate is down 34% since 1990. As of Jan. 1, 2014, there were more than 3.1 million breast cancer survivors in the U.S.
What Are The Risk Factors?
According to the CDC –
“Many factors can influence your breast cancer risk, and most women who develop breast cancer do not have any known risk factors or a history of the disease in their families. However, you can help lower your risk of breast cancer in the following ways—
- Keep a healthy weight.
- Exercise regularly (at least four hours a week).
- Get enough sleep.
- Don’t drink alcohol, or limit alcoholic drinks to no more than one per day.
- Avoid exposure to chemicals that can cause cancer (carcinogens).
- Try to reduce your exposure to radiation during medical tests like mammograms, X-rays, CT scans, and PET scans.
- If you are taking or have been told to take, hormone replacement therapy or oral contraceptives (birth control pills), ask your doctor about the risks and find out if it is right for you.
- Breastfeed your babies, if possible.”
Screening Can Find Breast Cancer Early
Although breast cancer screening cannot prevent breast cancer, it can help find breast cancer early, when it is easier to treat.