This October marks Breast Cancer Awareness Month – a time to come together and support those affected by this disease. While we have made great strides toward understanding breast cancer, there’s still so much left to learn.
As the leading distribution company in Uganda, African Queen understands the importance of a strong workforce, and with more than 60% of our staff women, we want to ensure they, and our customers, are well informed on the signs and symptoms of the disease. We continue to fight because we know the power of pink can make all the difference. We are willing to provide awareness to reduce the number of women being diagnosed with breast cancer. We shall continue to stress that early detection can save lives, and thus call upon women to carry out frequent checks on their breasts as part of their routine. This involves a self-check where women are advised to hold and press different parts of the breast to check for any lumps, internal swelling, discomfort, or pain and seek medical attention if found.
Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among women and the second leading cause of worldwide cancer deaths. While it’s somewhat common to hear people refer to all women as pink, breast cancer may affect anyone in their lifetime. In fact, many women don’t even get diagnosed until after they’ve had a family history of breast cancer.
In Uganda, breast cancer is the most common type in women and is predicted to exceed 48% per 100,000 population per year by 2030. It is estimated that up to 89% of women in Uganda present with stage III or IV disease, a time when breast cancer is more difficult to treat and the outcomes are poor. So how can women detect breast cancer early? There are several signs that suggest you need to speak with your physician about a potential diagnosis such as swelling of all or part of the breast, skin irritation or dimpling, breast and nipple pain, or the nipple turning inward redness or thickening of the nipple or breast skin a nipple discharge other than breast milk a lump in the underarm area.
Even though we know what causes breast cancer, there are still no cures for this deadly disease, hence the importance of continued education and awareness on how to prevent this terrible illness. And with so many people being diagnosed each year, it’s no wonder we all are affected by this life-changing disease. There are a number of things you can do to lower your risk, such as getting regular mammograms from the age of 40; not smoking; maintaining a healthy weight, exercising regularly, and having regular screenings.
Breast cancer patients may feel alone and isolated when they are diagnosed with the disease. To help them cope, there are many services available to them and their families, including support groups and medical equipment suppliers. Caring for a breast cancer patient is a difficult task for any family member, but finding ways to help alleviate some of these burdens can be supportive in many different ways. Here are some ways you can help them during this challenging time.
Be present. You don’t need any special skills to be there for someone with breast cancer. Simply offer a helping hand.
- Take time to listen without judgment, letting them know that they are not alone in the battle. If the person wants to talk about it more, they’ll open up.
- Always share with them their fond memories that will put a smile on their faces. Remember that it’s hard for anyone to talk about what they are going through when they are in pain.
Here are some resources to help you get informed about this disease:
African Queen No. 1 Distributor Limited is a privately-owned organization in the business of large-scale importation and distribution of Fast-Moving Consumer goods in the categories of Personal Care (Hair and Skin), Stationery, Homecare, and Foods & Beverages.