By Dr. Smita Vats, Gynaecology
Though it is quite obvious that you cannot treat or prevent some of the risk factors involved in breast cancer such as aging and family history, but you can always work upon it with an optimistic frame of mind. Here, we will talk about certain preventive measures with respect to breast cancer:
- Self Breast Examination: Regular self-examination of breasts after every menses or once in a month to feel for any lump, skin changes or abnormal discharge from the nipples , can help in early detection & to reduce the chances of breast cancer.
- Be religiously careful about your weight: Being overweight is one of the causes of breast cancer, so keeping an eye on your weight is of paramount importance. Fat tissues can be responsible for increasing the level of estrogens in your body which further can make you prone to breast cancer.
- Find time to do some physical work: Regularly exercising and getting involved in physical activities can lower the risk of breast cancer. It acts as a boon for your health and can also be helpful in keeping an eye on your weight.
- Eat healthy and abstain from alcohol and smoking: Healthy eating habits are always good for strengthening your immune system, besides you can also work upon lowering the risk of breast cancer. Eating plenty of fruits and green vegetables boosts your overall health & reduces the chances of development of breast cancer.
- Avoid smoking & alcohol: Cigarette smoke as well as alcohol is known to release multiple carcinogens ( cancer – producing substances ) into your body hence it is better to stay away from both.
- Avoid prolonged use of combined hormonal pills: Notwithstanding the benefits of birth control & hormone therapy after menopause, Combined pills also carry with them the risks of breast cancer if taken for a duration longer than 4-5 years. So, try and switch to other alternatives as per your doctor’s advice if you want to keep yourself away from risk of breast cancer.
- Breastfeeding: Apart from being good for the health of your child, it is equally beneficial for the mother. You should at least breastfeed for a total of one year, which can help you greatly in preventing the risks of breast cancer.
- Seek prompt medical attention: In case you notice any abnormal discharge from the nipples, or any new lump in breasts or underarms, it is imperative to get it examined by a medical expert who can make the correct diagnosis & initiate early treatment