Expert TalkExpert Talk: Can Wearing A Sports Bra Increase Your Risk For Breast...

Expert Talk: Can Wearing A Sports Bra Increase Your Risk For Breast Cancer?

Sports bras have been around for several centuries now, and it is a woman’s personal choice whether she wishes to wear them or opt for other cuts, shapes, and fits. When it comes to sports bras, it is preferably and specially used during a workout session or by those who need extra support for heavy breasts. There are many misconceptions about wearing a bra and this does not leave behind the sports bra segment either. 

The Channel 46 collaborated with Dr Vidhi Shah, Consultant-Breast OncoSurgery, Hiranandani Hospital, who reveals whether wearing a sports bra can increase the risk of Breast Cancer. And if not, what raises the risk of developing this medical condition?

Can Sports Bras Cause Breast Cancer?

There is misinformation freely available on the internet, a major one being that wearing a sports bra can cause Breast Cancer. There is no medically proven evidence or any research that can conclude that wearing any type, colour, or fabric of bra can cause Breast Cancer. In fact, wearing a bra is beneficial for a woman as it gives proper support to the breasts, and helps maintain a healthy body posture and image.

7 Factors That Put You At Risk Of Developing Breast Cancer

There are clinically proven lifestyle changes that one can make as a preventive measure, to avoid the risk of suffering from Breast Cancer. Here are seven habits to reduce the risk of Breast Cancer:

1. Obesity

Obesity is linked to a number of diseases – cardiac problems, hypertension, Breast Cancer, and several others. A lot of Breast Cancers are dependent on oestrogen hormone receptors, and fat produces excess oestrogen, even in menopausal women, increasing the risk of cancer in the breasts.

2. Smoking & Alcohol Consumption

Expert Talk: Can Wearing A Sports Bra Increase Your Risk For Breast Cancer?

This harmful lifestyle habit damages the cells and impairs the cell repair capacity, making you susceptible to various cancers, including Breast Cancer.

3. Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT)

The usage of this therapy for combating the effects of menopause has been associated with an increased risk of Breast Cancer.

4. Ignoring Your Health

This is the biggest issue among the masses today. The high levels of stress and responsibilities make women neglect their own health. Many times, women do notice symptoms or breast lumps but tend to ignore them and not consult a doctor, believing that it isn’t harmful or giving in to the social stigma associated with the disease. This, in turn, leads to the disease spreading aggressively to other parts of the body and becoming increasingly less treatable. As a result, it is not only essential to consult a doctor when you feel a lump in your breast but also to go for annual health checkups, so the medical condition can be treated in its early stages.

Also, you should follow a healthy diet that includes fibre, protein, vegetables, fruits, etc. Avoid foods like red meat, trans fat, and processed food, among others, which have a high content of unhealthy fats. You should also maintain your mental health along with physical health, and make sure to follow a regular workout routine to de-stress. Talk to a doctor and he/she can prescribe vitamins and other medications as supplements to maintain good health. 

5. Lack Of Awareness

It is important for everyone to know their family history – about the diseases that run in the family. Contrary to the popular myth that Breast Cancer can occur only in older women, it can occur in women and men across ages. It is necessary to be aware that the trend is changing, and now almost 50% of Breast Cancer patients are below the age of 50 years!

6. Ignoring Annual Health Checks

Expert Talk: Can Wearing A Sports Bra Increase Your Risk For Breast Cancer?

Once you turn 30, you should make sure to go for health checkups at least once a year. Also, you can do a self-screening test from the age of 25 years to check for the presence of lumps in your breasts and other possible symptoms that may indicate Breast Cancer.

7. Ignoring Possible Symptoms Of Breast Cancer 

You should consult a doctor if you are facing these symptoms:

  • Pain in the breast
  • Swelling of the breast
  • Rash, flaky skin or irritation on the breast
  • Dimpling of the breast skin
  • Lump in the breast or armpit
  • Discharge of blood or milk from the nipple

While it is common for women to develop Breast Cancer, men too can also be diagnosed with the medical condition, in rare cases. This can happen due to the inheritance of certain genes that increase the oestrogen levels. Also, they can be affected if there is a family history of Breast Cancer. 

Thus, it is essential that you reach out to your physicians or specialists for authentic information and not search the internet for answers. This will help avoid the spread of misconceptions and unnecessary anxiety. Also, it is crucial that women prioritise their health and focus on their lifestyle, to lead a healthy life.

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