Empowering Breast Health: Tips for Your Routine
You probably know that October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and we want to make sure you have all the tools necessary to support your breast health, not just for this month but for a lifetime!
We’ve compiled some tips for you to implement into your routine so you can rest easy knowing you’re keeping your breasts healthy:
Follow a Healthy Regimen
Maintaining a healthy diet filled with veggies, lean protein, and whole grains, exercising regularly, sleeping well, not smoking, and limiting alcohol intake are pillars of a healthy regimen that naturally apply to breast health as well. Following a healthy lifestyle plays a far greater role in your overall health than genetics, so try your best to get into these good habits. Your body and mind will thank you!
Give Yourself a Breast Exam
Getting to know how your breasts look and feel will help you to understand your body better and notice if any changes occur. To perform a breast self-exam, stand in front of a mirror with your arms on your hips and check for any signs of swelling, redness, or puckering of the skin. Then, raise your arms and look for the same changes. Feel your breasts for any lumps as you press on different points, working in a circular motion through the entire area of each breast. Do the same lying on your back, too, and in the shower. A self-exam should be performed once a month. For women who are pre-menopausal it’s best to perform the exam a few days after menstruating, and for those who are post-menopausal picking the same day each month is a great practice. If you’re not sure what to look for, always consult your doctor.
Wear a Sports Bra When Exercising
Sports bras are designed to give your breasts extra support while exercising, so don’t go without one. While you exercise, breast tissue moves around. If you’re not wearing an adequate bra, this can lead to back pain and discomfort, and over time can cause soft tissue damage and sagging. Sports bras provide three levels of support: low, medium, and high, which correlate with the type of exercise (walking is a low-impact sport while running and aerobics would be categorized as high-impact). Find your best match when it comes to sports bras and put them to use—you deserve the highest quality support!
Apply Sunscreen to Your Collar Area
The skin around your neck and décolletage is among the most sensitive on your body. To prevent sunburn and signs of aging, apply sunscreen to this part of your body every day. Yes, that’s right, we said every day! Even if you won’t be outside long, you can still get sunburned while driving or walking briefly from one place to another. After showering, it’s a good practice to moisturize with a hydrating body lotion, especially on your breasts.
Take Vitamins and Supplements that Support Breast Health
Vitamin D, known as the “sunshine vitamin,” is one of the most important vitamins that comes from select foods and exposure to the sun. If you’re concerned about a Vitamin D deficiency, consider taking a supplement or eating more Vitamin D-rich foods like spinach, kale, and salmon. Omega-3 fatty acids, which can be found naturally in fatty fish like salmon and sardines, are another critical vitamin for breast health.
Schedule Routine Mammograms
Mammograms play an important role in the care and health of your breasts. According to the American College of Radiology (ACR), women over the age of 40 should get one mammogram every year. While this test can be uncomfortable and painful for some, this type of X-ray is designed to detect tumors and other abnormalities. To ensure the best possible experience, search for a well-regarded mammography facility and stick to one center so you have your yearly results all in one place.