Adult women of all ages are encouraged to perform breast self-exams at least once a month to check for any abnormal lumps or growths that may need to be checked by a healthcare provider. Here are instructions on how to perform a breast self-exam:
Using the pads of your fingers, move around your breast in a circular pattern moving from the outside to the center. Check for lumps, thickening, or hardened knots.
Visually inspect your breasts with your arms at your side, then raise your arms overhead. Look for changes in contour, swelling, or changes in the nipples. Then, rest your palms on your hips and press firmly to flex your chest muscles.
Place a pillow under your right shoulder and your right arm behind your head. Using your left hand move your fingers around your right breast gently and in small circular motions covering the entire breast area.
Light, medium, and firm pressure should be used while performing a breast self-exam. If there are any changes or abnormal lumps, have your healthcare provider evaluate the area. If you have any concerns, ask your healthcare provider to perform a mammogram to test for early signs of breast cancer development.