When was the last time you did a self-breast exam? Don't know how? Let me explain.

As you all may know , October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month however, we can't just focus on our breast health only in October. Women of all ages are encouraged to perform self breast exams every month right after your period. You can perform the exam either lying down or standing up in the shower. It's recommended to perform the self exam in the shower. Here is a few tips and clues on how to perform a self breast exam.

-Feel for a hard lump, thickening or any change in your breast tissue.

-Lie down on your back with a pillow under your right shoulder.

-Use the pads of the three middle fingers on your left hand to examine your right breast. ---Press using light, medium and firm pressure in a circular motion.

-Follow an up and down pattern.

-Feel for changes in your breast, above and below your collarbone and in your armpit area

-Repeat on your left breast

The steps may be repeated while bathing or showering using soapy hands.

Step Two: In Front of the Mirror

Look for changes in the shape, size or appearance of your breasts. Look for dimpling, rash or puckering of the skin or nipple, nipple discharge or any change from normal. Inspect your breasts in four steps:

Holding arms at sides, holding arms over your head, Pressing hands on hips to tighten chest muscles, bending forward with hands on hips.

For additional resources about Breast Cancer Awareness or free screenings please see below

Women's Cancer Protection Program

The Women's Cancer Protection Program provides free mammograms, clinical breast exams and Pap tests for Maryland residents who are income eligible, and are not covered by health insurance for these services. Diagnosis and treatment services are also available through the Baltimore County Breast and Cervical Expanded Services Program and the Maryland Breast and Cervical Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment Program

All services are provided by private medical professionals in the Baltimore area and scheduled by the nurse case-management staff once individuals are determined to be eligible for the program.

Eligibility Guidelines

Maryland residency.

Do not have health insurance to cover the cost of the screening.

Women age 40 to 64

Do not exceed income limitation

Program Information

If you would like to request multiple brochures for an organization or event, please download and complete the Literature Request Form (PDF) and fax it to 410-377-8104 or visit their website: https://baltimorecountymd.gov/Agencies/health/healthservices/cancerservices.html#women

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