How To Do A Breast Self-Exam At Home

A Step By Step Guide

Doing a regular breast self-exam at home can help detect breast cancer early when it is easier to treat and more likely to be cured. Most abnormalities and lumps are not breast cancer, but any changes should still be reported to your doctor.

Checking your breasts at home is a simple and free procedure that can easily be implemented in your life once a month combined with the following:

  • regular physical exams by a doctor
  • mammography
  • ultrasound

4 Steps For Checking For Breast Cancer At Home:

Step 1: Stand in front of the mirror with your shirt and bra removed and place your hands on your hips.

Look out for any:

  • changes in breast shape and color
  • dimpling or bulges of the skin
  • changes in the location of the nipple or whether your nipple has inverted
  • rash, soreness, or swelling

Step 2: Raise your arms above your head and check once again for the above-mentioned bullet points.

Step 3: You can either do this step lying down or standing up or to be extra safe, you can do this step twice in both ways. Open your hand and create a pad with your index, middle, and ring fingers. Use your right hand for your left breast and vice versa.

When standing up, press the pads of your three middle fingers and press down on every part of your breast. Cover the whole breast using light pressure, then medium, then firm, and move your fingers in a circular motion to check for any lumps.

When lying down, your breast tissue spreads more evenly, thus making it easier to feel any lumps, especially if you have larger breasts. Lie down, place your left arm behind your head, use your right hand to check your left breast, and use the same technique as standing up. And vice versa for your right breast.

Step 4: Look for any unusual discharge from your nipples by squeezing your nipples gently; the fluid could be watery, milky, yellow, or blood.

What to do when you find a lump in your breast?

Please do not panic. Many women have lumps in their breasts, which are often benign (not cancerous). There are a number of reasons for benign lumps in your breast, whether due to hormonal changes or an injury.

If you do notice any changes, do not hesitate to contact your doctor and let them know, so you can schedule an ultrasound or mammography to know for sure. When it comes to any cancer, it’s always vital to catch it early to combat it the best.

Additional Info:​

No one has to go through cancer alone. You can talk to someone for immediate support by calling the Hong Kong Breast Cancer Foundation support line at +852 2525 6033 or reach out to the Hong Kong Cancer Fund via their hotline at +852 3667 3000.

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