“Once you choose hope, anything’s possible”-Christopher Reeve
As many of you know, October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and with September quickly winding down, it’s time to start preparing for this month of awareness. NBCAM is an annual international health campaign organized by major breast cancer charities every October to increase awareness of the disease and to raise funds for research into its cause, prevention, and cure. This campaign also offers information and support to those affected by breast cancer. Thousands of people are affected every year by this disease, so any support is extremely appreciated and well received.
During the month of October there are various ways you can participate in NBCAM. You can gather a group of family members and friends to form a team for the National Race for the Cure in a city near you, or do a 2-day breast cancer walk with a group (or alone). In addition there is also the Susan G. Komen 3 Day For the Cure, which is the global leader of the breast cancer movement. By participating in a charity walk or run you are not only donating funds to the cause, it’s also a great way to get outside and exercise with family and friends!
You can also participate in “Pink Days.” Pink is the chosen color to represent breast cancer, and during Breast Cancer Awareness Month each October people raise money by organizing theme parties, or a “pink day” at work (where employees wear pink clothing or accessories). The money raised is then donated to the organizer’s charity of choice.
Breast Cancer Facts and Information According to the American Cancer Society’s most recent estimates:
- Breast cancer is second only to lung cancer in cancer deaths among women in the U.S.
- About 39,520 women in the U.S. are expected to die from breast cancer in 2011.
- An estimated 450 men in the U.S. are expected to die from breast cancer in 2011.
- The most proven and significant risk factors for getting breast cancer are being female and getting older.
- Recent studies suggest that many women in the U.S. are getting their first mammogram later than recommended, not having mammograms at recommended intervals or not receiving appropriate and timely follow-up of positive screening results. This may lead to more advanced tumor size and stage at diagnosis.
- One woman is diagnosed with breast cancer every three minutes, and one woman will die of breast cancer every 13 minutes in the U.S.
- There are about 2.5 million breast cancer survivors alive in the U.S. today.
- Women who maintain a healthy weight, exercise regularly and limit the use of alcohol are at a lower risk of developing breast cancer.
Choosing to participate in a walk/run for breast cancer, participating in a pink day, or simply making a conscious effort to recognize this month of awareness makes a difference. Respecting the month of October as a month dedicated to raising funds for breast cancer research, prevention and cure is definitely meaningful way to honor and show support to those battling the disease, as well as remembering those who have lost their lives to breast cancer.