These Jobs Increase Your Chances Of Breast Cancer. I Can’t Believe #7!

Is the career of your dreams putting you at a higher risk for breast cancer? A new report by the Breast Cancer Fund, “Working Women and Breast Cancer: State of the Evidence,” reveals more than 20 common jobs that put workers at an increased risk of developing breast cancer in comparison to other occupations. The research is based on the results of nearly 250 complete studies and includes insight as to why these career paths make women more susceptible.

20. Radiology Technicians

Advances in technology continue to minimize radiation exposure risks in health care. However, technicians who work regularly with radiological equipment such as X-ray machines are still twice as likely to have breast cancer.

19. Doctors

Emerging research shows that physicians and other non-nurse medical personnel may have risks up to 3.5 times greater than the average person. Carcinogenic chemical exposure may play a big role, but stressful, demanding positions may significantly contribute as well.

18. Nurses

Image by OnCall team via Flickr

Image by OnCall team via Flickr

A nurse is up to 50 percent more likely to be diagnosed with breast cancer than her peers in other occupations. The risks vary depending on job responsibilities and work environments, but exposure to sterilizing agents, cytoplastic drugs and radiation are common contributors, along with work-related stress, night shifts and long hours.

17. Teachers

A career as a teacher may double a woman’s risk of breast cancer, according to multiple studies. These risks affect educators at all grade levels, including preschool, primary, secondary and university teachers. Low activity levels and continued exposure to carcinogenic dyes may be to blame, according to a 2007 occupational medicine study.

16. Librarians

Librarians come in contact with an assortment of cancer-causing pigments and dyes, and they often sit for extended periods with limited physical movement. This combination creates a breast cancer risk up to four times higher than the average female.

15. Journalists

A journalist is also at a four times greater risk than average. Limited physical activity may contribute to the problem, but job-related stress and unconventional hours may also play a role.

14. Factory Workers

Ongoing research shows a direct correlation between exposure to chemical solvents and an increased risk of breast cancer. Machine operators, rubber and plastic manufacturers, textile workers, and others who work with solvents such as benzine, carbon tetrachloride and petroleum are two to three times more likely to be diagnosed with breast cancer.

13. Lawyers, Financial Advisers and Other Professionals

Research suggests that women in professional careers are four times as likely to develop breast cancer than the general population. High stress levels and limited activity are likely factors, but a number of other variables may also contribute.

12. Fire Fighters

Image by North Charleston via Flickr

Image by North Charleston via Flickr

A possibly carcinogenic career, fire fighters are often surrounded by cancer-causing chemicals and volatile compounds. Very few studies relating to female fire fighters and cancer exist, but one small report suggested a possibly higher risk to women over 55.

11. Cosmetologists

The International Agency for Research on Cancer considers hairdressing to be a probable or possible carcinogenic industry. Women who work in this field may have a breast cancer risk that is five times higher than the general population.

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