It’s Mammo Monday

24 Sep

Pink Ink…

I got my 1st mammogram a few years ago when I turned 40.  Honestly, I didn’t think much about it.  I heard it hurt.  Some people use that as an excuse not to get them!  But frankly, after nursing for 13 months, I figured, how bad could it really hurt?  I always say each person’s journey is unique.  This was no different. The appointment came and went without incidence.  In fact, what I remember is looking around the waiting room and seeing all the scared faces.  I have had a few mammos since then, and that has not changed.  Sometimes the fear of the mammo itself can create its own anxiety.  I have also have met so many who don’t really understand what mammos are or do.

Last year only 53% of American women over 40 had a mammogram.  Unacceptable! So today, the quick and dirty.

  • Mammograms, or as I like to say “mammos” are a non-invasive type of x-ray, used to help detect breast cancer at an early stage.
  • The best thing about mammos is that they can often detect tumors before they can be felt through self or clinical exam.
  • The exposure to radiation is minimal.  It’s like getting your teeth or chest x-rayed.
  • You can ALWAYS tell the tech to EASE the pressure.  Don’t be scared to speak up!
  • While they ARE the most powerful tool in the detection of breast cancer, they cannot be done in a vacuum! Don’t forget monthly self-breast exams and yearly clinical exams!
    • A clear mammo doesn’t mean you are IN the clear.  I found my lump only months after a clear mammo.  It was the size of a water bottle cap.
  • It is STILL recommended that women over 40 get mammos ever year or 2.  If you have a family history of breast cancer talk to your health care provider about getting them sooner.
  • Ask questions! If you don’t understand what they are looking for, or what the results say, SAY SOMETHING.  Remember, there is no “dumb question”.
  • Finally, there are places that provide free or low cost mammos to undiagnosed women. Call your local health department or local Susan G. Komen™ affiliate for more information!

A few minutes of pressure can save your life!

Remember, mammograms can save your life! Schedule yours today!

One Response to “It’s Mammo Monday”

  1. Michele Richardson September 25, 2012 at 10:55 AM #

    Great post! You inspired me and I scheduled my mammogram for this Friday – one day after my birthday! It’s a present to myself!

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