Our Strong Commitment to Breast Cancer Prevention and Awareness
In the realm of veterinary medicine and healing, your compassionate hearts extend to the animals in your care. Yet, as we embrace Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we encourage you to turn that same nurturing care inward—towards yourself and your fellow veterinary warriors.
According to the American Cancer Society, women in the United States have a 13% chance of developing breast cancer in their lifetime.1
In a world bustling with urgency, let’s slow down and embrace the importance of breast cancer prevention with the same compassion you extend to your patients. Each choice we make, each step we take towards our wellbeing, reflects our care for the world around us.
Understanding Breast Cancer Prevention
Breast cancer is a complex disease, but there are steps you can take to reduce your risk and increase your chances of early detection. Awareness is the first step in making informed choices about breast health. By being proactive and informed, you can play an active role in safeguarding your life.
Knowing the risk factors and increasing protective factors may help prevent cancer. Some risk factors for breast cancer include:2
- Older age
- A personal history of breast cancer or benign (non-cancerous) breast disease
- Inherited risk of breast cancer
- Dense breast tissue
- Reproductive history resulting in a greater exposure to estrogen
- Taking hormone therapy for symptoms of menopause
- Radiation therapy to breast or chest
- Drinking alcohol
By cultivating healthy habits—nourishing our bodies, staying active, and moderating our alcohol consumption—we can sow the seeds of prevention. In the quiet spaces of our self-care routines, we’re tending to our own vitality.
Breast Cancer Screening
The act of self-love is reflected in our commitment to regular breast screenings. These screenings are key to detecting breast cancer when it’s most treatable.
- Monthly self-exams. Perform monthly breast self-exams to become familiar with your breasts’ normal look and feel. If you notice any changes, consult a healthcare provider.
- Clinical breast exams. Schedule regular clinical breast exams as part of your routine check-ups.
- Mammograms. Mammograms are essential for early detection, especially for women aged 40 and older. Talk to your doctor about the recommended frequency based on your risk profile.
Women who receive regular screenings for breast cancer have a 26% lower breast cancer death rate than women who do not receive screenings.3 So, it’s important to stay on top of regular screenings to help reduce your risk.
Awareness in Action
In the spirit of compassion that defines our profession, let’s extend our hands in support within the veterinary community this Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
- Educate. Share information about breast cancer prevention, screenings, and healthy lifestyle choices with your colleagues, friends, and family.
- Advocate. Speak openly about breast health and encourage regular screenings and transparent conversations about breast health among your peers.
- Support. Extend your support to those affected by breast cancer by offering empathy, resources, and a helping hand.
Even what seems like the smallest action can mean the world to someone, so look out for ways to support those affected both directly and indirectly by breast cancer.
As we care for the creatures of this world, remember that you too are a cherished part of that circle. You are worthy of protection, care, and love. By taking proactive steps, staying informed, and spreading knowledge, you’re contributing to a healthier future for yourself and the veterinary community as a whole.
In the face of life’s uncertainties, Critical Illness Insurance through AVMA LIFE becomes a practical way to help protect yourself and your loved ones financially. It’s a commitment to help safeguard your wellbeing and ensure that, even in the toughest moments, you can focus on healing.
To find out more about Critical Illness Insurance available through AVMA LIFE—including coverage, feature, costs, eligibility, renewability, limitations, and exclusions—visit our website or give us a call at (800) 621-6360.
1“Key Statistics for Breast Cancer.” American Cancer Society, 2023.
2“Breast Cancer Prevention (PDQ®)—Patient Version.” National Cancer Institute, 2023.
3“Breast Cancer Facts & Stats.” National Breast Cancer Foundation, Inc,® 2023.
Underwritten by New York Life Insurance Company, NY NY 10010 on group policy form GMR.