No one ever wants to hear that they have breast cancer or any cancer for that matter. A diagnosis would be devastating no matter when it is given but should you worry about getting breast cancer because of breastfeeding?
Does breastfeeding cause breast cancer?
Research shows that breastfeeding does not cause breast cancer. Most studies show that pumping or breastfeeding actually reduces your chances of breast cancer – especially the longer you do it.
However, it is important to know that you can get breast cancer while you are pregnant or breastfeeding. While it is a small percentage of women who get cancer during pregnancy or breastfeeding you should still be diligent and aware of your body.
Lactating breasts can be lumpy because of normal breast fullness, and occasional plugged ducts. It is important to make sure you know the signs of a suspicious lump that needs medical attention.
Continue to do routine breast checks at home. A lump that might be concerning is one that doesn’t go away (like a plugged duct does), it could be firm and not painful and will stay in one position.
As always please reach out to your medical provider for any concerns or questions.
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- 5 Soothing Solutions for Dry and Cracked Nipples From Breastfeeding
- How Often Should A 6 Month Old Breastfeed?
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Katie Clark is an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC). She has helped thousands of mothers and families around the globe navigate breastfeeding challenges and questions since 2015. She has a passion for creating research-based, helpful breastfeeding education and helping parents find a way to make breastfeeding work for them. Katie is a mom of three little boys and lives in the great state of Colorado. She also has a degree in Communications with an emphasis in print journalism.