When should I start getting mammograms and how often?

When should I start getting mammograms and how often?


Most women know that mammograms are important, but not all women know when
they should start getting them. There are some factors that go into determining
when a woman should get one. For example, genetics play a factor. If you’ve had a close relative who has a
history of breast cancer, I suggest talking with your doctor about it and they can give
you tailored information about when you should start and how in depth the testing should be. There’s also instances where a woman
might find something suspicious when doing a self breast exam. Maybe there’s a lump, or some discharge
from the nipple, or just something that wasn’t there before that’s not normal for you. Don’t ever hesitate to bring up these changes
and observations with your doctor, because then they can ask more specific questions,
perform an exam as well, and then determine if further investigation is warranted. And sometimes testing is warranted before
a woman, generally speaking, is supposed to begin having mammograms. Without genetic factors or other concerns,
a woman between the ages of 40 and 44 has the choice of beginning to be screened yearly. And then between 45 and 54, a woman
should have a mammogram yearly. Women who are 55 and older, and that have
a history of normal screenings and mammogram results in the past,
may go to every 2 years, but you can continue going yearly if you’d like. And a lot of women have questions about when
you should stop getting mammograms. The American Cancer Society recommends that
women receive them for as long as they anticipate living for another 10 years, and so for some
women, this may be a long time, especially if you’re having a good quality of life
otherwise. So if you have more questions about that,
talk with your doctor and they can give you tailored information and advice. If you have any more questions in the future
for me, feel free to ask them on our Intermountain Moms Facebook and Instagram pages, and recommend
us to your friends and family too.

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