Don’t be a noob, Protect your boob

Staff Writer: James Sorensen

The month of October is officially recognized as National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. This month is used to spread knowledge about breast cancer and work towards a cure or at least treatments that could reduce the risk of death. The month was established late in the 1900s as a way of supporting already diagnosed patients and encouraging them to talk about their stories so others can learn about their struggles. Since its incarnation, the month has quickly become one of the biggest charities/awareness of the year and has led to breast cancer gaining the most funding out of any other form of cancer. This month has also had a huge impact on how attention can be brought to previously unknown diseases.

Breast cancer cases were estimated to first be recorded around 3,500 years ago in ancient. The disease was easy to spot because of the unusual and disproportionate lumps in the chest region and changes in texture or shape of the breasts. Breast cancer itself was not widely considered a problem until the 1600s when physicians began to develop theories as to how breast cancer was contracted. They originally believed such wild things as frequent sex or curdled milk was causing it, however French physician Henri Le Dran suggested using surgical tools to remove a tumor that resided in the affected area. While many others have contributed to this idea, and we have made great strides since then with new ways of preventing or halting the disease, there is still no definitive cure for breast cancer. Going into the 20th century more people were being diagnosed with breast cancer and because it wasn’t as well known at the time people did not understand what people were going through and how they felt, until the creation of breast cancer awareness month.

As stated earlier breast cancer awareness month was established by the American Cancer Society in 1985 as a way to spread the struggles of being diagnosed with breast cancer. The earliest activities done by the group recorded was how they use to pass out pink ribbons (playing off the AIDS ribbon and how most people diagnosed are women) encourage people to get regular mammogram tests in order to find out if they are affected. The month started to rise in popularity very quickly especially in the year 2002 when the annual race for cure run was held in 100 hundred cities across the U.S. and acquired over 1.3 million participants. Soon afterwards the event expanded into over 50 more countries around the world. The month itself and its famous pink ribbon have become huge symbols during this time of the year, with many organizations both large and small altering their image to include the ribbon as a way to support the cause.

The affect this has had on disease awareness as a whole has also been great. Breast cancer has not only brought notice to its own disease, but also all other forms of cancer. Since its popularity spiked in the early 2000s many other forms of cancer such as kidney, lung, brain, etc. have seen a large increase in both awareness and funding to their cure, and in addition have adopted months dedicated to them as well. The popularity of this month has also greatly impacted the funding the American Cancer Society receives. In the 2013-2014 year alone the breast cancer division raised 2.5 billion dollars from donations and fundraising events. With the funding they have recently acquired great strides have been made in cancer research that has funded better testing and more effective drugs that has led breast cancer to become the cancer with the least amount of deaths regarding its affected.

It’s easy to see that breast cancer awareness month has greatly impacted culture today. Many dress in pink throughout the month to show support of the patients

and schools host many fundraisers that go to curing breast cancer. If you or anyone else is interested in helping this cause the following website takes one-time or recurring donations and many private organizations also take similar ones. And if you would like to celebrate one last time this month on the 31st there is a volleyball game at Lakepoint in honor of breast cancer awareness with more information on the school homepage.

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