A few days ago I partook in my first mammogram. I may be a little young, as every person along the appointments way decided to tell me, but I had to do it for personal reasons. Well, fact is, I was petrified about facing the experience.
The only associations I have with mammograms is cancer and pain, so I think my fear stemmed from that. I heard that your breasts get squeezed and smashed and it's extremely painful. Ummm, not my cup of tea!
As I disrobed and put on the terrible hospital gown, open to the front of course, I became even more self conscious. When I become worried, I usually began talking, and will talk to anyone. It's kind of like someone that's drank too much and begin to tell ridiculous jokes and way to much personal info, yeah, that's worried, self conscious me. Unfortunately after I disrobed the only folks in the room were two older, sour looking hispanic ladies that did NOT look like they wanted to idly chit chat.
Luckily, my grad student assisting my nurse came and got me very quickly and I began to talk her ear off. Between the grad student and the nurse, I'm pretty sure they heard my whole life story while I was trying to bravely explain I was afraid of the machine that is going to smash my breast.
Bless their hearts, they were so nice and explained what they were going to do to my little bittys. Even though, the part about "smashing" is true, it's not painful. Even when I was in the contraption I was expecting an extra stamping smash of my bitty and much to my surprise(and delight) there was no extra smash. The most uncomfortable part was probably me trying to get my shoulder and head out of the was because I had to get so close to the machine because my bitties are so itty!
All in all, a mammogram is something all of us ladies should embrace for a way to keep us aware of happenings in our bodies. Breast cancer is the most common cancer besides non melanin skin cancer (CDC website) and 1 in 8 women have a chance of developing breast cancer (Avon Walk), so the earlier you detect it the better. A Mammogram may not be the funnest thing in the world, but it's not as bad as everyone makes it out to be. Protect yourself by being brave.