How to Check Your Breasts : 10 Easy Steps To a Breast Self Examination
Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer among women world wide, yet many women are still uncomfortable or clueless about performing breast self exams (BSEs). As part of my ongoing support for women’s health and breast cancer awareness, in this post, I offer some tips on how to perform your next BSE and how to check your breasts at home, properly.
When did you last examine your breasts? Do you know how to check your breasts at home? Have you ever done one yourself?
You may think you’ve heard all about how to check your breasts and do a self-exam, but the truth is, you may not be remembering correctly. If you’re not checking yourself regularly, you may be missing signs that could put your health at risk.
In this article, I’m going to give you the ten most important things you need to know about how to check your breasts and breast self-examination. Whether you’re a breast cancer survivor or someone who’s never done a self breast exam, there’s some important information on this list for everyone.
How to check your breasts in 10 easy steps
How to check your breasts in front of the mirror...
Look at your breasts with your arms flat down by your side.
Look at your breasts and armpits with your arms raised above your head.
Place your hands on your hips to engage your muscles.
How to check your breasts in the shower...
Raise your left arm above your head.
Feel your left breast with your right hand.
Do the same on your right side.
How to check your breasts on the bed...
Place a pillow under your right shoulder and place your right arm above your head.
Feel your right breast with your finger pads in a circular direction.
Check your right nipple and areola area.
Finally, repeat steps 7-9 on your left side.
How to Check your Breasts More Thoroughly & What to Look Out For
- Remove your bra a good 20-30 minutes before beginning your examination so any indentations from your underwear have subsided.
- Stand in front of the mirror and ensure there is decent lighting.
- Stand straight and put your hands on your hips.
- Look carefully at your breasts and check for any bulging of the skin, dimpling, redness or swelling.
- Check that your nipple position is as you remember it and that it has not changed recently.
- Check the size, shape and colour of the tissue has not changed recently.
- Now raise your arms check that the bulging of the skin, dimpling, redness, swelling, the size, shape and colour does not change.
- Look for signs of fluid leaking from one or both nipples.
- Next, lie down on the bed and check each breast with the alternate hand.
- Use a firm, smooth touch, keeping your first four fingers together.
- Using the pads of your fingers, feel your breast in a circular motion using different pressures.
- Feel from the top of your collarbone to the bottom of your ribcage and from your armpit across the breast to your cleavage/breast bone.
- Finally, do the same sat upright and use the same motions as described above.
- You should be checking your breasts regularly. At the very least, once a month.
- Hormones during your menstrual cycle can change the texture of your breast tissue that can make it feel lumpy.
- Glands in the breasts can swell if you are possibly pregnant, causing changes in the appearance of your breasts.
- After menopause, breasts can feel a lot less firm.
It’s worth taking note of regular changes that happen month on month due to your cycle.
Visit your GP if you notice any changes or have any concerns ASAP.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness month!
As part of my ongoing support for the Breast Cancer Community and to celebrate Breast Cancer Awareness month, I am supporting Breast Cancer Now‘s annual Wear It Pink campaign.
I’ll be shedding my usual black and wearing pink in October for Breast Cancer Now’s WEAR IT PINK fundraising day.
If you’d like to support me, we have a donation box at the beauty reception at Hair Professional or you can click the button below to donate on my Just Giving page.