Breast cancer myths and rumors are endless and recently the rumor that sleeping in a bra can cause breast cancer has been circulating. Ever since the husband and wife team Singer and Grismaijer reported that bras cause cancer in the 1990s, breast health experts have been working to dispel this claim.
Well, you can breathe a sigh of relief because based on cancer research it looks like wearing your makeup to bed is more dangerous than sleeping in a bra. The American Cancer Society confirms “we do not know of any epidemiologic studies published in scientific journals that suggest bras directly contribute to breast cancer.” That includes bras with underwire, bras that don’t fit, or wearing a bra for too many hours a day. Wearing a bra has no link to cancer.
The Maurer Foundation understands that the myths can be rattling so it explains the theory and why it makes no sense. It was reported that underwire can cause pressure to the chest area causing toxins in the lymph system to be blocked. While this sounds like it makes sense, the cause of breast cancer has no link to the lymph system. Instead, breast cancer is believed to be blamed on gene mutations that lead to cells dividing suddenly and rapidly. The actual cause of the mutation is not known.
Need more reasons to doubt the claim that bras cause cancer? How about this: Men get breast cancer too. Also, breast cancer is older than bras! It is reported that breast tumors were detected as early as 1600 BC, but modern day bras weren’t sold until the mid-1930s.
The conversation reminds us of the signs of breast cancer and the obvious links to the disease.
Get a mammography every year after 40 years old, or younger depending on your family history. Look for the following when doing a breast exam:
- changes to breast shape or size
- breast dimpling, rash or other skin changes
- unusual or persistent breast pain
- nipple sores or discharge
- swelling or discomfit in armpit
Women’s risk factors include:
- personal and family history
- inheritance of mutations in the genes BRCA2, BRCA1 and CHEK2,
- exposure to female hormones (natural and administered)
- poor diet and inadequate exercise
- excessive alcohol consumption
So ladies, eat, sleep, jog, meditate, shower, whatever you want – all while wearing your bra! There is no evidence that your bra is bad for your health. Knowing that, maybe it’s time to order a few more CupCases for packing bras and bra protection! (Especially while the Charming Cheetah and Spot on Leopard are on sale through summer!)