Myth: Breast cancer is like a sneeze. It’s contagious.

Breast cancer is not contagious. You cannot “catch” it from someone or transfer it to someone else’s body. A person’s cancer cells cannot survive inside a healthy person’s body because their immune system would destroy the foreign cells.

While it’s important that we all are doing what we can to reduce our risk of breast cancer and our exposure to known carcinogens in our environments, it’s also important that we are keeping complicated information and issues from being misinterpreted and spread as fearful rumours. A lot of people sometimes believe that cancer is contagious when they know of a family who has multiple members with cancer or when many women in the same community become diagnosed. These are known as “cancer clusters.” However, cancer clusters often form because of a similar genetics in a family or constant contact with the same risk factor (alcohol, unhealthy diet, obesity, environmental concerns, etc.).

There is no evidence that spending a lot of time with someone who has cancer, having sex with them, kissing them, or breathing the same air as them will give you cancer as well. Breast cancer is, rather, the result of the uncontrolled growth of mutated cells that begin to spread into other tissues within the breast.

You can reduce your risk by practicing a healthy lifestyle, being aware of the risk factors that most affect you, and following an early detection plan so that you will be diagnosed early if breast cancer were to occur.

To find out more about reducing your risk, click HERE.


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