Oakland Macomb Obstetrics & Gynecology P.C

The Importance of Annual Mammograms

May 01, 2023

When it comes to maintaining your overall health, stay on top of your annual mammogram appointments. Regular mammograms are one of the best weapons against breast cancer. They make a huge difference in the effectiveness of treatments and improve your chances of a successful recovery.

At Oakland Macomb Obstetrics & Gynecology in Rochester Hills, Lenox, and Troy, Michigan, our skilled team of OB/GYNs and medical professionals is dedicated to providing you with the best care for your breast health. 

We understand that mammograms can be an anxiety-inducing experience for some women, so we provide a comfortable and supportive atmosphere to put you at ease during every appointment.

In this article, we break down the importance of annual mammograms and explain why they should be a priority in your health care routine.

What is a mammogram?

A mammogram is a low-dose X-ray exam of your breast that allows us to detect early signs of breast cancer, typically before a lump or other symptoms have manifested. 

Mammograms can reveal any abnormal growths, changes in breast tissue, or calcifications, which can help us determine if you need further testing or immediate treatment.

Why are annual mammograms important?

Annual mammograms are crucial for many reasons:

To detect cancer early

Mammograms can detect breast cancer in its earliest stages, even before any symptoms show. Early detection is vital for successful treatment and improves your chances of complete recovery.

To increase survival rates

Yearly mammograms play a significant role in catching cancer early and increasing survival rates. Some research shows that the five-year survival rate is almost 100% when breast cancer is discovered early. 

To monitor changes

Regular mammograms allow us to monitor changes in your breast tissue over time. This can help us identify irregularities or potential issues before they become more severe.

Keeping up with your annual mammogram appointments also provides you with a sense of comfort and allows you to be proactive about your health.

When should you start getting mammograms?

Women should begin getting annual mammograms at the age of 40, according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. But if you have a family history of breast cancer or other risk factors, we may recommend starting mammograms earlier. 

It's crucial to bring up your medical history with us at your first appointment. This helps us develop a personalized schedule for your mammogram appointments. 

How to prepare for your mammogram

To ensure the best possible experience and results during your mammogram appointment, schedule your appointment one week after your period when your breasts are less likely to be tender or swollen. This makes the exam more comfortable and results in more precise images.

Avoiding caffeine for a few days before your appointment can also help to reduce discomfort. On the day of your appointment, don’t apply deodorant and lotions near your breasts or underarm area, as these can interfere with the mammogram images.

Bring your previous images along if you've had mammograms performed with a different provider. This can help us monitor any changes in your breast tissue over time.

By staying proactive and prioritizing regular mammograms, you can take active control over your overall health and well-being. At Oakland Macomb Obstetrics & Gynecology, we’re here to support you throughout this journey, ensuring you receive only the best care and guidance.

Contact us today to schedule your appointment online, or call us and take the first step toward a healthier life.