WITH one in nine women in NSW developing breast cancer in their lifetime, it is imperative to have regular check-ups.
As Shoalhaven Mayor Joanna Gash said last Wednesday when she announced she been diagnosed with the disease, breast cancer does not discriminate and can strike anyone.
However early detection and treatment greatly reduces the likelihood of the disease being fatal.
“Don’t put it aside, get checked,” Cr Gash, who is recuperating from a lumpectomy, said.
“Where would I be if they did not find it early on?”
Breast Screen NSW offers a free two-yearly mammogram that aims to find breast cancer before the cancer is even felt or noticed.
It is available for women aged 40 and older.
Even though there is much emphasis on early detection, lifestyle changes can reduce the risk of breast cancer.
Studies have shown that limiting alcohol consumption and eating a healthy and balanced diet will not only improve the emotional wellbeing of a person but can play an important role in decreasing the chances of getting breast cancer.
The Shoalhaven offers many avenues in which those suffering with breast cancer can be assisted.
The Shoalhaven Breast Cancer support group meets regularly at the Shoalhaven Ex-Servicemen’s club on the first Thursday of every month at 10.30am.
Other groups across the Shoalhaven offer support to patients, carers and their families throughout the journey. Treatment options, financial support, transport to and from hospitals, exercise groups and accommodation are all available within the region.
For information on any of these contact Denyse Davey 4421 8847.
Meanwhile, an upbeat Cr Gash urged women to never lose hope.
“You don’t need two good boobs to be mayor,” she said.