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October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month: Assess Your Risk

braves breast cancerOctober is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and it’s time to ask your mother, sister or wife a very important question: Have you scheduled your annual mammogram?

According to the National Institutes of Health, mortality rates for breast cancer are outpaced only by lung cancer; so early diagnosis and treatment are critical to a good outcome.

So be kind to yourself and schedule your annual mammogram today.
The risks for developing breast cancer include, but are not limited to:

Age – As women age, risk levels rise.

Genes – Inheriting the BCRA1 or BCRA2 gene greatly increases risk.

Family history – Having a first-degree relative with breast or ovarian cancer significantly increases risk.

Personal history – Starting periods before age 12 or menopause after age 55, increases risk.

Additional risk factors include being overweight, taking birth control pills, not having children or having children after age 35, drinking alcohol, undergoing hormone replacement therapy or having dense breast tissue. –michele fling