October is Breast Cancer Awareness month which is an annual campaign that aims to raise awareness of the impact of breast cancer in our community.

More than 20,000 Australians will be diagnosed with breast cancer in 20231. It’s the most commonly diagnosed cancer in Australia and it was estimated that it accounted for 12.7% of all new cancers diagnosed in 20221. Around 1 in 7 women and 1 in 600 men will be diagnosed in their lifetime2. While the incidence of breast cancer is increasing, the good news is that the chance of making a full recovery is high, if it’s detected early. With this in mind, below are some preventative steps you can take.

Early detection is key

The best method of early detection of breast cancer in younger women is through breast awareness and regular self-checks. For women aged between 50 and 74, BreastScreen Australia is a government initiative that provides free mammograms every 2 years and for women of any age, regular health screening by your GP can also include breast checks.

What to look for

Regardless of age, everyone must be aware of the way their breasts look and feel. Self-examination is easy to incorporate into your routine when you shower, use body lotion or while getting dressed – being familiar with what’s normal for you is the key. There are several warning signs to look out for:

  • a new lump in your breast or underarm (armpit)
  • thickening or swelling of part of your breast
  • irritation or dimpling of your breast skin
  • redness or flaky skin in your nipple area or your breast
  • pulling in of your nipple or pain in your nipple area
  • nipple discharge other than breast milk
  • any change in the size or the shape of your breast
  • pain in any area of your breast

If you notice any of these warning signs, ensure you see your GP right away.

Want to know more?

For more information on breast cancer awareness, together with some useful resources and links, visit Cancer  Australia or the Breast Cancer Network Australia or speak with your GP.


The health, medical, diet and nutrition, fitness and financial information contained in this article is not a substitute for advice from a qualified medical or other health professional or a financial adviser. It is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any health problem. Always consult your medical practitioner or other health professional about any medical issue or concern, before changing your diet, starting an exercise program, or taking medication or supplements of any kind.

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Inspired Money