Breast Self Examination - Mother's e-Guide

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Breast Self-Check...

Breast self-examination should be done once a month so you become familiar with the usual appearance and feel of your breast. Familiarity makes it easier to notice any changes in the breast from one month to another. Early discovery of a change from what is ‘normal’ is the main idea behind the self-examination. The outlook is much better if you detect cancer in an early stage. If you menstruate, the best time for breast self-examination is 2 or 3 days after your period ends, when your breasts are likely to be tender or swollen. If you no longer menstruate, pick a day such as the first day of the month to practise breast self-examination.

The visual guide below illustrates succinctly how to achieve result-yielding breast self-examination.

1. Stand before a mirror. Inspect the two breasts for anything unusual
such as any discharge from the nipples or puckering, dimpling or scaling of the skin.

Breast Self Examination
The next two steps are designed to emphasize any change in the shape or contour of the breasts.
As you try the steps, you should be able to feel your chest muscles tightened.

2. Watch closely in the mirror, clasp your hands behind your head and press your hands forward.

Breast Self Check

3. Next, press your hands firmly on your hips and bow slightly
toward your mirror as you pull your shoulders and elbows forward.

Breast Self Examination
The next part could be attempted under the shower (but not a must) because fingers glide over soapy skin,
making it easy to concentrate on the texture underneath.

4. Raise your left arm. Use three or four fingers of your right hand to explore your left breast firmly, carefully and thoroughly. Beginning at the outer edge (of the breast), press the flat part of your fingers (on the breast) in small circles, moving the circles slowly around the breast. Gradually, work towards the nipple. Be sure to cover the entire breast. Pay special attention to the area between the breast and the underarm, including the underarm itself. Feel for any unusual lump or mass under the skin.

Breast Self Examination

5. Gently squeeze the nipple and look for a discharge.
If you have any in the month, whether during the breast self-examination or not,
see the doctor for prompt medical attention.

Breast Self Examination
Repeat step 4 and 5 for the breast on the right side.

6. Step 4 and 5 should be repeated lying down.
Lie flat on your back with the left arm over your head and a pillow or folded towel under your left shoulder.
This position flattens the breast and makes it easier to be examined.
Use the procedure of the same circular motion described earlier for the right-side breast.

Breast Self Examination

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