Thinking about seeking out treatment or resources after getting diagnosed with breast cancer can be alarming and gut wrenching, especially if you are newly diagnosed. But when you find out the cancer is back after a period of remission or found in other parts of your body can take a big toll on you mentally, physically, and financially. Remember there are many resources for breast cancer patients, providing helpful information on breast cancer causes and prevention, where to get treatment in Malaysia and where you can find the support you need.
BREAST CANCER CAUSES AND PREVENTION
Breast cancer is a common term for a cancerous, malignant tumour that starts in the cells that line the ducts and lobes of your breast. The main causes of breast cancer are not clear, however, studies have connected and identified numerous risk factors for breast cancer in women including hormonal, lifestyle, and environmental factors that can increase the risk of the disease. Other factors include:
- Personal history
- Early menstruation
- Late menopause
- A first pregnancy after the age of 30 or no prior pregnancies
- Use of oral contraceptives
- Long term exposure to hormone therapy
- Excessive weight gain after menopause
Frequently Asked Questions
Are monthly breast self-checks a necessary part of breast cancer prevention?
There are no studies suggesting that breast self-exams reduce the risk of breast cancer, but understanding and knowing how your breast looks and feels like under normal circumstances can save lives and possibly prevent cancer from spreading. Seeking the appropriate medical advice as soon as you detect any abnormal changes in your breasts is a good first step in breast cancer prevention protocol, especially for those who are in high-risk groups.
Can my diet cause or prevent breast cancer?
Eating a balanced, healthy diet can help decrease your risk of breast cancer and certain types of cancer. A healthy diet, in general, can help reduce the risk of other diseases such as diabetes and heart disease.
Does my lifestyle put me at risk for breast cancer?
Research suggests that an unhealthy sedentary lifestyle can increase your risk of developing breast cancer. Excess weight gain poses a risk for breast cancer this can be because fat cells make estrogen and if you are exposed to excess estrogen over time, you may be at a higher risk of developing breast cancer.
Can exercising regularly decrease my risk of breast cancer?
There is a link between regular exercise for 4 to 7 hours per week and a lower risk of breast cancer. Regular exercise can regulate your blood sugar levels and control your insulin growth factor - high insulin levels have been linked to breast cancer, as it’s one of the hormones that affect how your breast cells grow. Moreover, people who exercise on a regular basis tend to maintain a healthier weight compared to people who don’t exercise at all.
It is important to note that there are no concrete causes and prevention of breast cancer. Some people who have no risk factors can still develop cancer, while others with risk factors never do. While it seems like that there is not much that can be done to effectively prevent breast cancer, early detection and receiving the appropriate medical attention from a qualified healthcare provider is one of the most effective forms of breast cancer prevention.