Breast Self-Awareness Messages

PDFile.gif Breast Self-Awareness Messages in English
PDFile.gif Breast Self-Awareness Messages for African Americans
PDFile.gif Your Breast Care: Helpful Hints for Women

Click here to watch Breast Self-Awareness Interactive Video (ENGLISH)

Click here to watch Breast Self-Awareness Interactive Video (SPANISH)

Except for skin cancers, breast cancer is the most common cancer in women, but it can be successfully treated. Screening tests can find cancer early, when chances for survival are highest.

1. Know your risk
•Talk to both sides of your family to learn about your family health history
•Talk to your provider about your personal risk of breast cancer

2. Get screened
•Talk with your doctor about which screening tests are right for you if you are at a higher risk
•Have a mammogram every year starting at age 40 if you are at average risk
•Have a clinical breast exam at least every 3 years starting at age 20, and every year starting at age 40
•Sign up for your screening reminder at

3. Know what is normal for you
See your health care provider if you notice any of these breast changes:
•Lump, hard knot or thickening inside the breast or underarm area
•Swelling, warmth, redness or darkening of the breast
•Change in the size or shape of the breast
•Dimpling or puckering of the skin
•Itchy, scaly sore or rash on the nipple
•Pulling in of your nipple or other parts of the breast
•Nipple discharge that starts suddenly
•New pain in one spot that doesn't go away

To see illustrations of these warnings signs please visit the Breast Facts section.

4. Make healthy lifestyle choices
•Maintain a healthy weight
•Add exercise into your routine
•Limit alcohol intake
•Limit menopausal hormone use
•Breastfeed, if you can

Breast Cancer: Your Guide to Breast Self-Awareness