Breast Check Guide


Breast Cancer: Statistics and Checks


JULY 24, 2023

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Our latest collection Boobie Sista features artwork by Kombumerri and Butchulla artist Zowie Baumgart that tells the story of her best friend Kelly’s experience with breast cancer. Kelly is passionate about sharing her story in the hopes it will raise breast cancer awareness and encourage others to prioritise their health. 

Four years ago, Kelly felt a marble-sized lump on her breast while she was showering. She quickly made an appointment for a follow up and was diagnosed with early-stage breast cancer at the age of 38. She was lucky enough to make a full recovery, and she urges women to pay attention to their breasts, make time for their health, and to be aware of how widespread breast cancer is.

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Breast Checks

Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer amongst women in Australia, with 1 in 7 women experiencing breast cancer in their lifetime. Early detection and intervention give you the best chance of successful treatment. Self-examination, being breast aware, and regular breast screening (for women over the age of 40) are all ways you can take care of your health and your breasts.

Take the time to get to know how your breasts look and feel normally. This will help you notice changes sooner.

Great times to do this are:

- While showering

- Getting dressed

- Using body lotion

- Looking in the mirror

You don’t need to use a special technique, just look at and feel your breasts regularly. Get to know what's normal for your body. Include all parts of your breast, armpits and up to your collarbone.

Unusual changes to look out for include:

- A lump or thickening in the breast (especially if it’s only in one breast)

- Changes to the shape or size of the breast

- Changes to the shape of the nipple, such as discharge, crusting, sores or ulcers, redness or inversion (a nipple that turns in when it used       to point out)

- A rash or other change in skin texture or colour

- Swelling or discomfort in the armpit

- Persistent, unusual pain that doesn’t go away

If you do detect these changes, immediately contact your GP for an appointment.

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Breast Cancer Statistics

Approximately 57 Australians will be diagnosed with breast cancer every day this year, with 3 of these being under the age of 40. Being breast aware and understanding the warning signs is so important to gaining early diagnosis and treatment, which gives you the best chance of survival. If you’re over 50, having a breast screen every 2 years can help detect even earlier. Mammograms are free for women over 40 in Australia and are run by BreastScreen Australia.

The National Breast Cancer Foundation (NBCF) is Australia's leading not-for-profit organisation funding world-class breast cancer research towards their vision of Zero Deaths from breast cancer. Yarn has partnered with NBCF to launch Boobie Sista, a collection to raise funds and to promote awareness of techniques that help detect breast cancer.

Since their inception in 1994, NBCF has invested over $200M into more than 600 world-class research projects across Australia. In this time, death rates from breast cancer in Australia have improved by 43%. They’ve seen remarkable results, but the job's not done.

So check your breasts. And check in on your Boobie Sistas.

Yarn is donating $2 to NBCF for each product sold from Boobie Sista and each sale pays royalties to the artist. We are proud to support NBCF’s vision of Zero Deaths from breast cancer.

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