October is Breast Cancer Awareness month and while the constant discussion of breast cancer flooding communities is informing, educating and encouraging people around the world to be aware of the disease, it has also generated a lot of breast-cancer-related fears. The fears range from being scared of being a high risk candidate or actually having breast cancer to the treatment process or recurrence of cancerous tissue after going into remission.

Breastcancer.org provides information from medical experts and support offered by their community members that can help you manage the fears, instead of allowing them to manage you.

Fear of first diagnosis

Most people think their risk of getting breast cancer for the first time is higher than it really is. Try to get a realistic idea of your risk from your doctor. Your risk is affected by many factors. Many people who review their risk factors find out that their risk is lower than they'd expect.

The fear of being diagnosed with breast cancer makes some people avoid going to the doctor. But the sooner you see a doctor, the sooner you can know what your situation is. Never let fear stop you from making a good choice when it comes to your healthcare.

Fear of recurrence

Are you concerned that a change in your body, or symptoms that don’t involve your breast, mean that cancer has come back or spread?

If you have a personal history of the disease, you have very different worries. You may already have had a good deal of treatment, and now you are being followed carefully to make sure you are okay and free of any signs of recurrence. You obviously want to do everything possible to lower the risk of cancer returning.

Personal Quote

"I live with the fear of this disease coming back. Any little pain, any little cough, I worry. I'm constantly checking myself, my breasts. I'm at the red light, in the car, and I'm checking myself. I'm obsessive-compulsive about doing my breast exam? I say to myself, 'I will conquer and overcome,' but it's a struggle for me."

—Debbie