Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Breast Cancer Awareness month

pink ribbon

October is Breast Cancer Awareness month in Australia.

Breast cancer is the most common cancer in Australian women, with 1 in 9 women diagnosed before the age of 85. It is a cancer that not only affects women - it is expected that this year alone more than 14,000 women and 105 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer.

Despite improvements in diagnosis, treatment and management in recent decades, sadly 7 women will lose their fight with breast cancer each day. Therefore, it is important to raise awareness to reduce the impact of breast cancer on women, men and their families.

Apparently it is rare to meet someone these days who hasn't been touched by breast cancer, whether it be themselves or someone they know.

I recently saw a documentary by Dawn Porter, a British TV presenter, called "My Breasts Could Kill Me". It is about Dawn's personal journey as she explores the genetics connected with the disease, as her own mother died as a young women from breast cancer. It followed Dawn as she underwent various testing to find out if she had breast cancer and whether she was genetically predisposed to developing it. It was a very emotional journey as she realised given her family history she has a 40% chance of developing breast cancer.

After seeing this documentary it reminded me of the importance of getting regular checks and being mindful of your own body - as Dawn interviewed men and women as young as 23 who are fighting this disease and mothers who knew they would pass away while their children were still very young (which totally devastated me).

I have also come across this funky organisation called "CoppaFeel" - It is based in the UK and has some great tips for getting to know your body - which I believe is important for both men and women.

During October, Australia's main breast cancer organisations - BCNA, McGrath Foundation, National Breast Cancer Foundation (NBCF) and Cancer Australia - all hold events to raise funds and awareness for breast cancer.

I will be getting involved, will you?

Image from here.

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