For many women getting a mammogram sounds pretty scary. We’ve all heard it called the “boob sandwich”, and if you’ve not had one before, maybe you remember the tales told by your mothers, grandmothers, and neighbor women talking about getting squished in some large metal machine. Doesn’t sound very appealing, does it? But things have changed over the years, and mammograms aren’t what they used to be. One thing they still are, though, and that’s a great form of early detection. Early detection means an easier treatment and a higher chance of survival.
Take, for instance, a member of the Geodynamos, the team that inspired this Breast Cancer Awareness Week. One of their members, Stephanie, wasn’t feeling well for about a year. Her doctor thought it might be allergies, but thankfully a nurse told Stephanie to try getting a mammogram, even though she was only 35. The nurse helped her set it up, and they were able to find that Stephanie in fact had breast cancer. Stephanie is a good example of why mammograms are now recommended for women under the age of 40, and she’s also a good example of why, if we feel sick and it’s not getting resolved, we should keep pushing for answers. If you’re 35 or older, you should schedule a mammogram every year. Talk to your doctor if there is a history of breast cancer in your family, and make sure you perform monthly self-tests as well. And be persistent!
If you’ve never had a mammogram and the thought of one frightens you, check out this mammogram video from the American Cancer Society. Kknowledge takes out so much of the fear, and that may be the best reason of all for getting a mammogram!