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October is a month for recognizing a disease that affects women around the world every single day: Breast Cancer. Among the most common cancers that occur in women, by simply being female you have already increased your risk of developing breast cancer. Though men have been known to develop breast cancer, it is nearly 100 times more common in women.
For many years, October has been known for being dedicated to raising awareness about Breast Cancer. For instance, special events take place every year in October around the country that highlight the survivors, pay tribute to those who lost their courageous fight, and honor the ones still fighting. This is just one of the many ways to bring awareness to communities everywhere.
Here at Mountainside Medical, we salute the brave women and men who battle this disease. They are incredibly strong, magnificent, and beautiful people, and we are committed to focusing on raising awareness this month. If you would like to join us, here are 10 ways that you can help raise awareness for breast cancer:
With social media being the go-to for everyone these days, it is a great way to raise awareness about breast cancer. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest are some very popular social media networks where you can spread the word. How? Upload pictures of you, your family or friends wearing a pink ribbon to social media, share stories of how you or someone you know has been affected by breast cancer, and post links to breast cancer news and events in your area - making it visible and shareable to your social media network.
Simple, but effective! This will show everyone who drives behind you, or walks behind your vehicle or on the side of your vehicle, that you are a proud supporter of helping to beat breast cancer and raise breast cancer awareness!
Encourage your family and friends to receive their routine breast exam. Personally speak with them to remind them about the importance of being routinely screened for breast cancer, and tell them how much you care about their health and wellbeing. If a friend or family member is hesitant about going to their physician, offer to go with them to keep them company and offer moral support. Though breast cancer can occur at any age, it's important to encourage those women who are between the ages of 40 to 49 to talk with their doctors about when to start getting mammograms.
There are many events out there in which you can participate it. There's the Susan G. Komen walk and the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk, which helps honor those fighting the disease and raise awareness and money to save lives from breast cancer. Locally, there are charity events that are also dedicated to breast cancer awareness. For example: hockey is the most popular sporting event here in Upstate NY, and every year, our local college hockey teams show their support for breast cancer awareness by having "Pink the Rink" night, where all of the team wears pink jerseys, the ice is turned pink, and the proceeds from the tickets are donated to breast cancer research. Remember, you can even volunteer to start your own breast cancer event. Recruit some friends or family to help you!
Host an in-person fundraiser to raise money for breast cancer care. Individuals, businesses, students, and sports teams can all sponsor in-person fundraisers. Every fundraiser helps provide women with education about their breast health, free resources and screenings, and cancer care support. Some ideas for fundraisers include: benefit dinners, bake sales, sporting events, etc. If you're interested in fundraising opportunities, contact the specific breast cancer organization that you're interested in fundraising for, and they will send you ideas and detailed information about hosting a fundraiser.
Any organizations that you are affiliated with can add breast cancer announcements to their newsletters, email lists, or media releases. This helps enhance the health and awareness of those in the organization, and the community. You can even volunteer to write the announcement for the organization! Some organizations that you can reach out to include: your employer, schools, church, volunteer organizations, local women's organizations, senior centers, and any other community groups you are a member of.
Ask your doctor to give a group presentation on breast cancer and the importance of getting screened for breast cancer to a local community group, a local health fair, or even at your workplace. You can post flyers in the area stating where the presentation will be given to draw as large of a crowd as you can. If your doctor is not available, ask other health professionals if they would consider participating
Fundraisers don't have to be all in person anymore. They can be held entirely online. You can create an online crowdfunding campaign to support your favorite breast cancer research organization, to help raise funds for anyone you know who might currently have breast cancer, or to honor the memory of those you know who might have passed away from breast cancer. Promote your virtual fundraiser in as many ways as you can, such as by posting about it on social media, and telling your family and friends.
Start a website with information on breast cancer. With a blog site like Tumblr or a platform like WordPress, it's On your website, you can post information about breast cancer statistics, the symptoms of breast cancer, where one can get mammograms and screenings, and ways that others can increase awareness and join in the fight against this disease
A simple way to help spread awareness is to wear the pink ribbon that has become symbolic of breast cancer. Not only can you wear it, but you can encourage others to do the same. You don't need to just wear the ribbon though - go one step further and tell people why you're wearing it. Wearing the ribbon with pride and engaging in conversations about it helps increase awareness.
In addition to the ribbon, also consider buying products that have the pink ribbon, such as gloves, T-shirts, mugs, blankets, tags, medical supplies, and more. Companies that produce products with the ribbon symbol donate the proceeds to breast cancer research. For example, TheBreastCancerSite.com is one store where every purchase funds mammograms and breast cancer research and care.
As we begin Breast Cancer Awareness month, let us keep those who have fought, are fighting, and will fight in our hearts and prayers. Keep in mind that mammograms and breast cancer screenings, and early detection are key in fighting breast cancer. We can always continue to do our best to spread awareness for this horrible disease - not just in October, but all year round.