Girls, beware: Colouring hair, taking contraceptives ups breast cancer risk

Seemingly harmless things like using hormonal contraceptives or colouring your hair too frequently can increase your risk of getting breast cancer.

health and fitness Updated: Mar 10, 2017 09:09 IST
Asian News International, Washington
Colouring Hair,Breast Cancer,Contraceptives Negative Effects
Do you colour your hair too frequently? You may want to stop.(hair.colour/Instagram)

Though getting your hair coloured may feel nice for a while but it exposes you to the risk of breast cancer, just like using hormonal contraceptives do, warn researchers.

Researcher Sanna Heikkinen from the University of Helsinki in Finland and Finnish Cancer Registry evaluated the contribution of the use of hormonal contraceptives and hair dyes on breast cancer risk factors.

“The biggest risk factors in breast cancer include late age at first birth, using hair colour, high alcohol consumption and sedentary lifestyle,” said Heikkinen.

They analysed self-reported survey data from 8,000 breast cancer patients and 20,000 controls from Finland.

The results suggested that use of other hormonal contraceptives was, by contrast, associated with 32% higher breast cancer risk among younger women under 50 when compared to women who did not use hormonal contraceptives.

The team also investigated the amount of opportunistic mammography, which was found to be very common.

More than 60% of responders reported having had a mammography before the screening age of 50.

“Women should be more extensively informed of the harms of opportunistic mammography, such as accumulating radiation burden and the potential consequences of false positive or negative findings,” Heikkinen noted.

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First Published: Mar 10, 2017 09:05 IST