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Breast Health Q&A

Who is at risk for breast cancer?

Everyone is at risk for breast cancer. The two most important risk factors are being female and getting older. Most women diagnosed with breast cancer have no other known factors.

What can I do to reduce my risk of getting breast cancer?

There is no sure way to avoid breast cancer. But, you can do things that may improve your overall health. Maintain a healthy weight. Exercise and eat a diet rich in fruits and vegetables.

My mother had breast cancer a few years ago. Does that mean that I will get breast cancer too?

We don't know what causes breast cancer. But, most women who get breast cancer have no family history of the disease. If someone in your family has had breast cancer or you are concerned about your risk, talk to your doctor. Learn about your choices and ask when to start getting mammograms.

I am currently taking birth control pills. Do birth control pills increase my chance of developing breast cancer?

If you are currently taking birth control pills, your breast cancer risk is slightly increased. The increased risk from using birth control pills becomes less after you have stopped using them. After about 10 years your risk returns to normal.

Does drinking alcohol increase my chance of breast cancer?

Studies have shown that drinking alcohol can increase your risk for breast cancer.

My breasts feel lumpy and tender at certain times of the month. Does this increase my chance for breast cancer?

Breast lumpiness with tenderness or pain at certain times of the month is called fibrocystic breast changes. These breast changes are common, especially before your period, and do not increase your chance of getting breast cancer. Get to know the way your breasts look and feel. Learn what is normal for you. If you notice any change, see your doctor right away.

For more information or if you have other questions about your breast health or breast cancer, please call our breast care helpline (1-877-465-6636) or visit komen.org.

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Passionately Pink encourages you to turn your awareness into action!

When Alantheia was diagnosed with breast cancer, both of her daughters were pregnant. A non-profit center - locally funded in part by a grant from Susan  G. Komen – covered her screenings and post-diagnosis treatments.  Today, Alantheia spends lots of time babysitting. Be sure to see your doctor if you notice any changes in your breast.  And to help Komen continue making these life-saving grants, donate to your favorite Passionately Pink team!  

Breast Self-Awareness Card