WOODBURY - Breast cancer rates in the United States could increase 50 percent over the next 15 years, according to the National Cancer Institute.

Hillary Rutter, who works at the Adelphi Breast Cancer Support Group, says she has already seen younger women being diagnosed.

"I started almost 20 years ago at the program. You didn't see a lot of women in their 20s and 30s being diagnosed, but you do now," Rutter told News 12.

Researchers say part of the reason for the jump in breast cancer cases is because women are living longer lives, which includes the Baby Boom generation.

Lorraine Pace, a breast cancer survivor, says the only way to beat the statistics is to get regular checkups.

"Screening is important, breast exams are important, and mammograms are really, really important," said Pace.

The National Cancer Institute recommends women start getting regular mammograms by the age of 50. Many women who spoke with News 12 Tuesday said they should start getting mammograms even sooner.