It’s important to know how your breasts normally look and feel so you’ll be able to notice any changes.
- Breast size and shape
- Nipple size and shape
- Color and texture of the skin on the breasts and nipples
How to Check for Breast Cancer: Self-Exam
As many as 40% of breast cancers are found by a physical exam. A monthly breast self-exam is a great way for women of all ages to check their breasts for any potential changes. Most women don’t have completely symmetrical breasts, and that’s normal! However, if one breast suddenly changes, then talk to your doctor. Use these tips for breast self-exams:
- Visually check your breasts in the mirror with your arms at your sides, and then again with your arms raised above your head. Look for any areas of dimpling, puckering, or bulging. Check the skin for redness, rash or changes to the nipple.
- While lying down, move your fingers around your breast in a circular pattern. Breast tissue extends outside of the actual breast, so be sure to check up to the collarbone, out to the armpit, in to the middle of the chest, and down to the bottom of the ribcage. Then check the same areas while standing up or sitting up in a chair.
- It is not unusual for a woman’s breasts to change throughout her menstrual cycle, so you may want to perform an exam at different times in your cycle to be more familiar with these changes.
- Visit breastcancer.org for more detail about breast self-exams.
How to Check for Breast Cancer: Annual Mammogram
Mammograms are used to screen for breast cancers that may be too small to feel in a self-exam. The Breast Center of Maple Grove makes it easy to fit a mammogram into your busy life; we’re open Monday through Friday 7:30am-5:00pm with late hours until 8:00pm on Tuesdays, same-day appointments are available, and walk-ins are welcome. Make your appointment today by calling 763-398-6370.