Living Well

Preparing for Your First Mammogram

Preparing for Your First Mammogram

Getting your first mammogram can be stressful! However, it’s an important tool for detecting breast cancer early on, when its most effectively treated. The American Cancer Society recommends yearly screening for all women ages 40 and older.

What you need to know before:

  • Schedule your mammogram when your breasts are not tender or swollen to help reduce discomfort and for better pictures.
  • On the day of the exam, don’t wear deodorant or antiperspirant. It can show up on the x-ray as white spots.

What to expect when getting screened:

  • You’ll have to get undressed above the waist to get a mammogram.
  • You and the technologist will be the only ones in the room.
  • Your breast will be flattened, and the whole procedure will take about 20 minutes.
  • You might feel discomfort during compression. But some women feel pain during compression. Please tell the technologist if you feel pain.

Women should talk with their doctors about their potential risk factors before deciding when to start getting mammograms and how often they should get them.

Need to schedule your mammogram? Contact the Touro Women’s Imaging Center at (504) 897-8600 or