Breast Awareness

Breast awareness is about becoming familiar with your normal breast tissue and how it changes at different times of the month.

Get into the habit of looking at and feeling your breast from time to time so that you may notice any change that might be unusual for you. It is an important part of caring for your body.

Most breast changes will prove to be benign but you should always report any concern to your doctor.

The Breast Awareness 4-point Code

  1. Know what is normal for you
    • During child-bearing years, breasts often become enlarged, tender and lumpy shortly before a period starts but return to normal once the period is over.
    • After the menopause, the breast tissue is often less dense and firm, and becomes more fatty, making breasts feel softer.
  2. Know what changes to look and feel for
    • Please note for the abnormal changes as listed in the opposite page.
  3. Look and feel
    • You may feel and look at your breast through the mirror when changing or feeling it during bathing; or you may prefer to do it lying down.
  4. Report any changes to your doctor without delay
    • You will know better than anyone how your breasts feel and look normally. If you do notice a change, see a doctor as soon as possible.
    • Please don't worry as most of the breast changes will be benign and harmless.

What changes should I be aware of?

  • The breast
    • Change in the outline, shape or size
    • Puckering or dimpling of the skin
    • Any new discrete lump
    • Unusual pain or discomfort, particularly if new, persistent and localized
  • The nipple
    • Recent inversion or change in shape
    • Any discharge
    • Rash around your nipple
  • The armpit
    • A swelling under your armpit
    • Constant pain

You are welcome to approach medical and nursing staff for any enquiry.

(Content revised 11/2011)