October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. This is the perfect time to get screened, and a chance to give more support to breast cancer survivors, their loved ones, and those who are just beginning the fight of their lives. Think Pink with us and spread the word on how we can save lives by finding breast cancer early, when it’s most easily treated. Help Utah women live healthier and happier lives and get in to win a home workout rand prize equipment package from Sole Fitness and FM100.3 that comes with a treadmill, recumbent bike, and elliptical.
FM100.3 and the Utah Department of Health want you to know that getting screened for breast cancer this year is very important. Even if you feel healthy. No matter how healthy you are, your two biggest risk factors for getting breast cancer are simply being a woman and getting older. About 1 in 8 women will get breast cancer in their lifetime; and most women who get breast cancer don’t have a history of breast cancer in their family.
During the pandemic, breast cancer screening rates dropped as much as 89% across the country. If you skipped your mammogram last year or haven’t had one yet this year you may have skpped the chance to find breast cancer in its earliest stages when it’s most easily and successfully treated.
Let’s change that.
THINK PINK FACT TIPS
1 – All women 40 and older should talk to their doctor about getting screened for breast cancer.
2 – Your greatest risk factors for getting breast cancer are just being a woman and getting older.
3 – Utah has some of the best cancer hospitals and best cancer research centers in the country. But, we also have some of the lowest numbers of women who get screened. We need to change that.
4 – Mammograms can find breast cancer sometimes years before it can be felt or before you have symptoms. That’s why self-exams alone are not enough.
5 – You can reduce your risk of breast cancer by not smoking, limiting your alcohol, maintaining a healthy weight, eating plenty of vegetables, being physically active, and limiting postmenopausal hormone therapy.
6 – 1 in 8 women will get breast cancer in her lifetime and breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths for Utah women.
7 – Family history or genetics is only responsible for about 10% of breast cancer cases, 90% of breast cancer survivors had no inherited risk.
8 – If you have a family history of breast cancer or inherited changes in your BRCA1 and BRAC2 genes, talk to your doctor about ways to lower your risk.
9 – Most insurance plans cover mammograms as part of breast and cervical cancer screening coverage.
10 – If you don’t have insurance or have a high deductible, the Utah Department of Health has a program that offers free breast and cervical cancer screenings. Call 1-800-717-1811
11 – Get to know your body. Look in the mirror and if you see skin puckering, dimpling, discharge, or any change in the look or feel of your breast, alert your doctor.
12 – Finding breast cancer early in a localized stage has a 5-year survival rate of 99%.
13 – Mammograms are essential to detect breast cancer early, but regular self-exams and clinical exams by a healthcare professional can help identify abnormalities and warning signs.
14 – There are different types of breast cancers and they may be treated differently depending on the type, the stage, the grade, and a patient’s own health history.
15 – Utah consistently has one of the lowest screening rates in the country. That means too many Utah women aren’t finding their breast cancer when it’s early and most successfully treated.
16 – Before Covid, only about 61% of Utah women were getting screened for breast cancer. That’s barely more than half.
17 – During the pandemic, the CDC reports screening rates dropped as much as 89% across the country.
18 – You can book your mammogram directly without going through your doctor. Just call up the screening facility and make an appointment.
19 – Your employer can call and have a mobile mammography unit come right to your worksite. Ask your Human Resources or Manager to call the Utah Department of Health about it.
20 – If you don’t have enough extra money to pay for a mammogram on top of your other expenses, you may qualify for a free mammogram with the Utah Cancer Control Program if you are between 40-64 years old. Visit CancerUtah.org