Breasts - Know Them Save Them
This word means different things to different people.
Development of breasts in a teenaged girl is the time her mother would get worried about her daughter as to how to educate her about sexual health.
For men, this physiological feature of a woman's body has inspired awe, admiration, desire and lust from time immemorial. A woman's external beauty, to a large extent is related to her curves.
If I say that for a woman, her breasts are merely two bundles of soft tissues which need continuous support, I would be dishonest. Women too associate a sense of femininity, beauty, sensuality and pride with her assets!
An infant instantaneously knows from where is he going to get the nectar for his life and it's strangely miraculous that a baby just knows to suckle without being trained to.
The social conditioning based on the accepted norms of traditional Indian society expects girls to cover their breasts or even the curves as visible from her clothing. The dupatta, chunni, odhani, stole, whatever you call it, it is a piece of long cloth used to cover one's breasts from the preening eyes of the opposite sex. The 'Pallu' or "pallav' of the saree also serves the same function covering the curves given by the figure hugging blouse.
The way a dupatta is used to cover the breasts from the eyes of the people around, the same way girls are expected to be ignorant about their own body parts. Mothers would advise their young daughters not to change clothes in front of a mirror. The reason behind this thought could be the fact that sight can invoke sensual desire in a person, even if it's one's own body.
Ironically, this thought remains ingrained in the psyche of a woman for a long time and women generally remain unaware of the intimate parts of their body.... Women feel shy of their own bodies. They remain strangers to their own physical selves.
That is why it is very important that more and more information is written about and read and used about this deadly silent killer called BREAST CANCER. And, the important thing about it is that a woman herself needs to examine herself regularly and keep a watch over any symptoms to diagnose it at any early stage.
UNDERSTANDING BREAST CANCER
Dear reader, there is ample information available on the Internet about the disease and I would not like to reproduce it. However, I have tried to put things simply, the way you can use it.
What is Breast Cancer?
Breast cancer is an uncontrolled growth of breast cells
The term “breast cancer” refers to a malignant tumor that has developed from cells in the breast.
Who Is At Risk?
1. Women having family history of the disease.
2. Onset of menstruation before age 12
3. Onset of menopause after age 55
4. Not having children or first child after age 30
5. Less time spent breastfeeding your kids
6. Birth control Pills
7. Hormone replacement therapies
WHAT CAN YOU DO?
First, don't feel shy to know how your breasts look or feel like, because only then will you be able to observe any change in the parts. Hence a self examination is the first thing you can do. Click here to know how to do self examination. Remember :
a. Do a monthly self examination
b. Get an annual physician check up after 35 years of age
c. Get periodic mammograms done as advised by your gynaecologist. A suggested schedule is:
* begin at 35
* every year or two from age 40 -49
* every year beginning at age 50
Also note that you should get it done during first two weeks of your cycle if you in your menopausal stage.
WHAT SIGNS TO LOOK FOR IN SELF EXAMINATION?
Ladies, do know your body. Being vigilant is important, as otherwise the disease may creep up without notice and get diagnosed only when painful changes occur. Look for these signs, if they occur:
* swelling of all or part of the breast
* skin irritation or dimpling
* breast pain
* nipple pain or the nipple turning inward
* redness, scaliness, or thickening of the nipple or breast skin
* a nipple discharge other than breast milk
* a lump in the underarm area
WHAT CAN WE DO TO AVOID BREAST OR ANY CANCER?
Maintaining a healthy life style is a prerequisite to remain healthy in today's time. The basic fundas of eating right, good sleep, exercising and avoiding smoking and drinking alcohol works here too.
WHAT KIND OF FOOD MAY HELP US?
I dug out the old issues of my favorite health magazine "Prevention" looking for some information. And I understand that although, there is no cure for the disease, but anti oxidants in food helps our body against cancer. So why should we not include them in our diet and of our family members? Here are a few foods which have anti oxidants:
1. Turmeric - Used in every dish in Indian food, but make sure you are using a trusted brand, as there can be easy adulteration.
2. Mushroom - We love this fungi! It beefs up body defenses, suppresses breast and prostate cancer. Suggested recipes - Make sandwich filling with sautéed mushroom ; make regular mushroom pea curry ; add them well chopped in soups, they taste great! (Remember to blanch the washed mushroom before cooking)
3. Papaya - Protects against lung, stomach, prostate cancer. Also is great for digestion.
4. Green Tea - It is not really popular and is a bit expensive than the regular tea we have, but try to include it in your food plan at lest 1-2 times in a week.
5. Pomegranate - Helps kill breast and prostate cancer cells. The fruit can be added to custard, cream etc and can be squeezed to have as juice too.
NEXT TIME YOU KNOW WHAT TO GIFT YOUR MOM?
I know it is not going to sound too good to your ears, but next time you think of giving a gift to your mom or an elder aunt, gift her a MAMMOGRAM (The test to detect breast cancer). We, the younger lot still are very aware and take care of our health, but women generally had given their health the last priority in our society, so it's time YOU educate your family or relatives or friends and give the gift which should bring mental peace to the person and an awareness in this direction.
Breasts - Know Them Save Them
- » Published on October 13, 2010
- » Type: News
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