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Breast Cancer: Risk Factors and Prevention

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Breast cancer is the second most common types of cancers among women. According to stats, 1 out of 8 women in the US develops this condition at least once in a lifetime. It is common for women aged 55-65. Theoretically, men can also develop breast cancer but the risks are relatively low. Family history also plays a role. Other risk factors of breast cancer are genetic mutations, starting menstruation before 12 years, or going on menopause after 55, not having children and having dense breast tissues.

Symptoms and Risk Factors

There are a few common symptoms of breast cancer. These include:

  • Inflammation of the breast
  • Leakage from the nipple
  • Lump in the breast
  • Redness of skin around the breast

Apart from symptoms, there are certain factors that might put you at risk of getting breast cancer. Let’s go over some of these.

Your Lifestyle

Research has shown that the lifestyle choices you make can affect your chances of getting breast cancer. Some of these choices include:

  • Eating habits: The jury is still out on this one. There is no concrete proof of whether consuming certain foods can reduce your risk of getting breast cancer. But, it is advised to consume more vegetables and fruits for a healthy body.
  • Obesity: Studies have shown that women who have had their menopause and are obese are at a higher risk of developing breast cancer.
  • Exercise: A lack of exercise can raise your risk of getting breast cancer. On the other hand, regular exercise can help reduce this risk by reducing weight and boosting immunity.

Genetic Inheritance

As with other types of cancer, genes also raise your risk of developing breast cancer. The BRCA1 and BRCA2 genetic mutations are commonly associated with breast cancer.

These mutations can also lead to cancer in the ovaries for women. These mutations, if found in men, can also increase their risk of getting breast cancer amongst other cancers.

Role of Race

Breast cancer is the dominant form of cancer prevalent amongst women, apart from skin cancer, in all races. Black women are more prone to dying from breast cancer than white women. However, white women are more at risk of developing it in the first place.

Interestingly, this cancer is more common in black women compared to white women below the age of forty-five. The differences in rates of recovery between the races maybe due to financial reasons, biological make-up, or some other medical issues.

Treatment

The risk of breast cancer in women is increasing every day. However, the good news is that the treatment is getting better and more effective. Here are some of the tips to prevent breast cancer, for prevention is better than cure.

Breastfeed

Try breastfeeding for a total of one year or more. It significantly lowers down the risks of developing breast cancer. It also has a lot of other health benefits, for both, the mother and the child.

Avoid Hormonal Birth Control Pills

Birth control pills put you at a risk of developing breast cancer. If you can, consider opting for non-hormonal birth control options. Discuss your birth control options with your healthcare provider and see what suits you the best.

Avoid Post-Menopausal Hormones

Post-Menopausal Hormones aren’t supposed to be taken for a longer period of time. To better understand the risk factors specific to you, consult with your healthcare provider.

Don’t Forget Screenings

Don’t hesitate to visit your doctor and get regular screenings. Regular checkups are the best way to make sure you are your healthiest self and there is absolutely nothing wrong with being safe. Regular screening is especially important to detect breast cancer at an early stage where treatment is most effective.

Maintain a Healthy Weight

Maintaining a healthy weight also helps to lower the risk of cancer. While the effects of healthy eating and maintaining your BMI weight on breast cancer are unclear, researchers highlight that a healthy weight lowers the risk of developing cancer. Consume fruits and vegetables daily and prefer eating organic food. Avoid processed food, which is one the leading causes of cancer. Exercise and stay in shape. Exercising builds up stamina and increases life expectancy. The healthier you are, the lower your risk of catching a terminal illness.

Limit Your Alcohol Usage

According to some of the researchers, heavy alcohol use is linked to cancer. If you are a heavy drinker, limit your drinking. Remember that healthy life choices will not only ensure that you live a longer life but it will also ensure that you have a better quality of life.

If you suspect a lump or tumour in your breasts, consult with your Gynecologist immediately. You can find and book an appointment with a top Gynecologist in Lahore, Multan and Islamabad through oladoc.com. You can also call our helpline at 042-3890-0939 for assistance to find the RIGHT Doctor for your health concerns.

Disclaimer: The contents of this article are intended to raise awareness about common health issues and should not be viewed as sound medical advice for your specific condition. You should always consult with a licensed medical practitioner prior to following any suggestions outlined in this article or adopting any treatment protocol based on the contents of this article.
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