An estimated 12% of women will be diagnosed with an invasive breast cancer, making it one of the most common forms of cancer in the female population. The prevalence of breast cancer is second only to the rates of skin cancer in American women.
Two notable risk factors play a role in the development of breast cancer:
1. Being a woman
Because breast cancer rates are higher among seniors compared to younger generations, it’s essential for the aging population to learn more about this disease. Other risk factors for breast cancer include family history, dense breast tissue, previous breast tissue abnormalities, and having no children or having your first child after the age of 35.
Understanding the symptoms, warning signs, and risk factors can help you protect your health. Since October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we are encouraging women of all ages to be proactive about learning more about this condition.
Diagnosing and Treating Breast Cancer
The diagnosis of breast cancer involves the use of modern technology, such as:
- Lab tests
In most situations, breast cancer is first detected at home through self-examinations. Every woman should be consistent about self-checks for abnormalities and lumps in the breasts and armpits.
Treatments vary depending on a person’s age and the type of cancer. Common treatments include surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, and hormone therapy. The goal is to eliminate unhealthy cells in the body. But there are risks that come from these intense treatments, especially for seniors. The best prognosis comes when cancer is detected in the earliest stages.
COVID-19 and Routine Health Screenings
The COVID-19 pandemic has isolated seniors, especially since the complications of this virus are higher for people over the age of 65. Just because you are being careful to avoid exposure to COVID-19 doesn’t mean that you should skip your routine health screenings.
If your doctor has advised a testing or screening schedule, then it’s essential that you don’t miss these appointments. These tests can be safely performed by healthcare experts. You can monitor your risk of cancer and other life-threatening diseases, while also minimizing your exposure to Coronavirus.
At Windward Life Care, we support your health by connecting you with the right medical providers. Whether it’s time for a breast cancer screening, or you need other healthcare services, contact our team to learn more about available services.