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Quelling Your Nerves: Tips For Your First Mammogram

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If you're 50 years of age (or older) or have a history of breast cancer in your family, you should be getting an annual mammogram done as a means of ruling out breast cancer or catching it before it spreads. A mammogram is a relatively quick and simple procedure that involves performing an X-ray exam on each breast. If you've recently scheduled your first mammogram or plan on doing so in the near future, here are a few tips to ensure the process goes as smoothly as possible.

Bring Your Doctor's Contact Information

First of all, if you were referred to a mammography office by your regular doctor, make sure you have your doctor's contact information readily available when you go in for your mammogram. This includes the name, address, fax, and telephone number of your regular doctor's office. After all, the results of your mammogram won't be available right away, and most offices will want to have the results sent to your primary doctor. If you don't have this information available, the front-desk receptionist can probably look it up for you--but you can save time by finding it yourself.

Don't Wear Any Lotion or Deodorant

Because deodorants and lotions can make the results of your mammogram difficult to read (or could even be misinterpreted as a lump on your X-ray), you'll most likely be asked not to wear any on your exam day. As such, you may wish to schedule your mammogram for sometime early in the morning--especially if you're the type of person who sweats a lot. If you have somewhere to be after your appointment, be sure to bring a deodorant stick along with you!

Schedule Your Appointment Wisely

Finally, because a mammogram does involve putting some pressure on the breast tissue, some women experience discomfort during the exam. To reduce discomfort, schedule your appointment during a time of the month when your breasts are the least tender. For most women, this is in the week after your menstrual period. Of course, if your doctor has ordered you to get a mammogram does as soon as possible, you won't have the luxury of deciding what time of the month to have it done.

Having annual mammograms is important to your overall health as a woman. By keeping these tips in mind, you can make sure the process of having the exam done goes as smoothly as possible. For more information, contact a health clinic like Women's Care Inc.