Breasts come in all sizes and shapes, just as women do. Your own breasts will even change throughout your life. Your monthly menstrual cycle and menopause, childbirth, breastfeeding, age, weight changes, and birth control pills or other hormones may change the shape, size, and feel of your breasts.
Breast self-exam is done once a month so that you become familiar with the usual appearance and feel of your own breasts. The best time to do a breast self-exam is two to three days after the end of your period, when your breasts are less likely to be tender or swollen.
If you discover anything unusual, such as lumps, discharge from the nipple or dimpling or puckering of the skin, you should see your doctor at once. Remember, eight out of 10 biopsied breast lumps are not cancer.
Download a PDF of these exam instructions.
Breast HealthCare Center Self Exam card
To perform your breast self-exam:
For more information on breast cancer prevention, visit the Breast HealthCare Center or call 800.996.5433.