October 14, 2020
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, an international campaign aspiring to raise awareness and funds to hopefully eradicate the disease.
More Information on Breast Cancer
Cancer develops from uncontrolled mutations and cell divisions within the body. Breast cancer develops in the breast, but may spread to other areas of the body. Most breast cancers are in the duct, but some are lobular, medullary, mucinous, inflammatory, and/or caused by lymphomas, sarcomas, and/or tumors. While it is more commonly detected and diagnosed in women, men can also develop breast cancer.
The common warning signs of cancer are: new lump in breast or armpit, thickening/swelling of breast, pain in the breast, abnormally red skin surrounding nipple and/or breasts, nipple discharge, and any changes in the shape/size of the breast.
Those who are at-risk are: 50+, individuals with the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes, individuals with a family history of breast cancer and ovarian cancer, and women with dense breasts.
Breast Cancer Statistics
1 in 8 women will develop breast cancer in their lifetime. In 2020, however, it is estimated by the American Cancer Society that 276,480 new cases of breast cancer will be diagnosed. It is also estimated that approximately 42,000 women will die from breast cancer. Unfortunately, after skin cancer, breast cancer is the second-leading cancerous cause of death in women.
It is important that we raise awareness for breast cancer this October. Early screening and awareness can prevent the disease.
How You Can Participate in Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Here are ways residents can participate in Breast Cancer Awareness Month:
a. A great organization you can donate to is the Breast Cancer Research Foundation (BCRF). BRCF is currently the largest privately funded organization in the U.S. for breast cancer research. Funds go to researching and designing new approaches to all aspects of breast cancer and how it impacts daily life.
b. Another organization you can donate to is the National Breast Cancer Foundation (NBCF). NBCF encourages communities to raise their voices, work together, and allocate resources for those who may have, or have not, lost their lives to breast cancer. This is especially important during 2020, considering the massive pandemic and its challenges.
c. You can donate to our local hospital, Johns Hopkins, here. Funds go directly to education, outreach, research, and patient advocacy.
a. Since October focuses on spreading information about breast cancer, it is important to learn more about the disease. We recommend that you download, read, and share these Susan G. Komen Educational Resources. There are texts on self-awareness messages, screening, diagnosis, treatment, questions to ask your doctor, and more.
a. You can start a virtual individual, business, or student fundraiser for NBCF. Read more information here.
b. Residents can also sign up as a volunteer for the American Cancer Society. Volunteers organize fundraisers and events, provide rides with the Road to Recovery program, help enact policy changes and laws, and provide support to patients and survivors.
4. Raising Your Voice
a. Break the stigma against cancer by raising your voice this October. Share how you and/or loved one was impacted by breast cancer to NBCF. Or, proudly wear your pink ribbon this October month.
We encourage our residents to partake in Breast Cancer Awareness Month with Monarch Waugh Chapel. Think pink and wear your pink ribbon!