Breast checks and breast cancer

We all know of someone first or second hand who has been affected by breast cancer in some way.  You might have a relative, or a friend. We know how common it is, but we also know that we’re getting much better at the detection and treatment of breast cancer.

This page isn’t all about breast cancer information or statistics. You can find all that information at https://breast-cancer.canceraustralia.gov.au/statistics

What we’re focusing on is the early detection of any lumps, bumps or skin changes that can be suggestive of breast cancer so you can get it checked out right away.

Breast self-examination

Being familiar with the look and feel of your breasts makes it easier to notice when any changes occur.

From your 20’s onwards it’s good to do the following checks once per month.

What to do Why
First
  1. Stand in front of a mirror with your hands on your hips and shoulders straight. Look at the shape, colour and size of your breasts
  2. Next while still looking in the mirror raise your arms in the air and look for the same things – shape, colour and size of your breasts
A visual check of your breasts will help you to see:

  • The contours of your breasts
  • Any changes to their usual shape and colour
  • Ensure there is no discharge from the nipple
  • Any redness, rashes or swellings
Next Feel your breasts while you are under the shower This is a personal choice but some women prefer to feel their breasts when the skin is slippery so they can notice any changes
Then Feel your breasts while lying down with your arm bent at the elbow, and resting above your head. Stretch your hands so your palms and fingers are flat, like a plate.

Make sure you feel the entire breast area from your collarbone to your tummy, and include your armpits.

This will allow you to feel without poking your breasts. It is another helpful way to look for;

  • Lumps
  • Areas that are painful
  • Skin that is dimpled, flattened and different from before

When to see your doctor

You should see your doctor about

  • New lumps
  • New lumpiness
  • Changes in the shape of your breast
  • Changes in the colour of your breast
  • Changes in the nipple
  • Discharge from your nipple
  • Any persistent breast pain

If you are concerned about any changes to your breasts, or if you have questions on how to examine your breasts, ask your doctor at GS Health.

Our Specialties

Green Square Health provides a range of services to fulfil the needs of our community.
Please find more information on the pages below about our services and tips on how to stay healthy.