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Breast cancer seems to be all around us these days. I think all of us know at least one woman who has fought breast cancer, and many of us fear that we could be next.
Knowing the breast cancer facts is very important in prevention and detection. The most important thing you can do to help reduce your risk for acquiring breast cancer is to live a healthy, active lifestyle. This means cutting the processed junk out of your diet and eating an organic, whole foods diet. And of course staying active and exercising to keep your body healthy is key.
When it comes to detection, most of us know we should be doing a monthly self-exam, but how many of us are actually following through with that practice? I know I should be better about it.
While doctors urge women to get an annual mammogram, there is a lot of data that shows that mammograms are unnecessary at the least, and harmful at the worst. We all know that radiation poses a cancer risk, but did you know that mammograms expose you to radiation that’s up to 1,000 times greater than the radiation from a chest x-ray?
In addition, during a mammogram, your breasts are compressed tightly (and many times painfully), which could cause any existing malignant cells to spread.
Themography is a newer technology that many health advocates are trying to get the word out about. Thermography uses a scanning-type infrared camera to measure your body’s surface temperature, so there’s no radiation involved. It then presents the information as a digitized image – like a map of your body illustrating heat patterns.
These thermal images (thermograms) are analyzed for abnormalities that may be signs of disease in your body. Since our bodies are thermally symmetrical if normal, thermal asymmetries can indicate problems.
When it comes to detecting breast cancer, mammograms look at anatomical changes in the breast (masses or lumps in the breast tissue). Conversely, thermograms look at vascular changes in the breast (blood flow patterns, inflammation and asymmetries).
Getting an annual thermogram will enable you to map changes in your body’s heat patterns over time. This will alert you of any changes from your normal state.
So, if you’re looking for a safer way to detect breast cancer, do some more research into thermograms.
Thank you to Breast Cancer Society, Inc. for inspiring the information provided in this post.