What happens in a breast awareness appointment? Well, like it did for many people, Covid forced us to look at the way we do things and make changes. We went online for phone and video consultations, developed a better website and decided to focus on breast awareness rather than examination. The main reason behind this is that 42% of breast cancers are actually found by women themselves. Not by a nurse who sees you once a year. If you get used to incorporating this into your monthly routine, you stand a great chance of noticing a change early. And we all know that the earlier found the better when it comes to cancer. Early detection leads to better treatment and outcomes.
So, if you see our nurses for an appointment our sole aim is to get you understanding what is normal for you and to equip you with the knowledge and confidence to act if you find anything different. We use the NHS 5 Point Plan to help you;
1. Know what’s normal for you
2. Learn how to feel and look at your breasts
3. Know what changes to look for
4. Report any changes to your GP without delay
5. Attend routine screening offered by the NHS.
We will ask you if you examine your breasts already and if so, how. We will demonstrate the best way to do this, so you feel comfortable doing this alone at home and we’ll advise how to look at your breasts so that you get familiar with your body. It’s important to take responsibility of your body – the better you know yourself, the faster you’ll be able to pick up on anything unusual for you.
We can also discuss lifestyle choices to help reduce your risk of breast cancer, what to do if you are at all worried about a breast change and what happens if you are referred to the breast clinic. We do not diagnose as our focus is enabling you to notice a change first. Breast awareness is so important and while we understand it can be worrying, we are here to talk to and support you.