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Women are being encouraged to be more “Breast aware” this Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Health and wellbeing

25 October 2023

A pink ribbon which is the symbol for Breast Cancer Awareness with text that reads: "October Breast Cancer Awareness Month"

The West Northants Public Health team are urging all women to take the time to get to know their breasts through the TLC (Touch, Look, Check) approach as part of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Breast cancer is one of the leading causes of cancer-related deaths across the UK impacting individuals of all backgrounds and ages, causing around 11,500 fatalities each year. That’s why Public Health in West Northants are encouraging all women to check their breasts and take up the breast cancer screening offer if eligible, to help early diagnosis and treatment.

The Touch, Look, Check approach involved the following simple steps:

  • Touching your breasts - can you feel anything unusual or new?
  • Looking for changes - does anything look different?
  • Checking any new or unusual changes with your GP

The NHS breast screening programme is vital in early diagnosis and treatment, with screening available every three years to all females between the ages of 50 and 71 at their local NHS breast screening centre. If you are eligible and registered with a GP in West Northamptonshire, you will be invited to attend your appointment.

If your appointment is not suitable or you did not attend, please contact the Northampton Breast Screening Service on 01604 545825 or 01604 545830.

I am encouraging all women to increase their awareness around being “Breast Aware” and to attend screening appointments when you are invited.  Across West Northamptonshire we are seeing a decline in the uptake of breast screening, resulting in many missed early diagnoses. Please ensure you take the time to attend your appointment or reschedule if unable to attend your appointment.

If you are not eligible, please do make sure you are checking your breasts regularly through the TLC approach – following these simple steps to check, can really help early diagnosis.
Dr Annapurna Sen, Consultant in Health Protection for West Northamptonshire Council

Breast cancer can also be prevented through making small changes. These include introducing healthier meals options into your diet, being more physically active, reducing alcohol consumption and if you smoke, looking to quit.

For further information on Breast cancer, please see: NHS: Breast cancer in women.

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