How to do a Breast Self-Exam

It’s important to understand how and when to do a breast self-exam.  Much easier than you may think if you’ve never done one!  Try performing a self-exam at least once a month.  Since a woman’s body changes throughout the month, it’s even better to do one a few times a month.  Over time, the exam will go much easier as you get to know yourself and how you typically are throughout the month.  If you’re familiar with the process and do it regularly, however, don’t take it for granted and rush through.  It’s best to be thorough.  Following are steps I found through the National Breast Cancer Foundation’s site:

Step 1 

In the Shower

Fingers flat, move gently over every part of each breast. Use your right hand to examine the left breast, left hand for the right breast. Check for any lump, hard knot, or thickening. Carefully observe any changes in your breasts.

Step 2

Before a Mirror

Inspect your breasts with your arms at your sides. Next, raise your arms high overhead.

Look for any changes in the contour of each breast, a swelling, a dimpling of the skin, or changes in the nipples. Then rest your palms on your hips and press firmly to flex your chest muscles. Left and right breasts will not exactly match—few women’s breasts do.

Step 3

Lying Down

Place a pillow under your right shoulder and put your right arm behind your head. With the fingers of your left hand flat, press your right breast gently in small circular motions, moving vertically or in a circular pattern covering the entire breast.

Use light, medium, and firm pressure. Squeeze the nipple; check for discharge and lumps. Repeat these steps for your left breast.

This week only: If you donate to help find a cure through the Geodynamo’s home page, email me at themommyspot (at) gmail (dot) com and you’ll receive 3 extra entries into every giveaway throughout the week! (You do NOT need to donate to enter the giveaways, but if you do (even $1) I want to say “thank you”.) 

4 thoughts on “How to do a Breast Self-Exam

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  3. It’s a good idea to do this pre and post your menstral period. That way you get a feel for what is normal for your breasts at different times of the month.

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