Cancer, a six-letter word so powerful it ignites tremendous fear. It brings devastation to someone who has been diagnosed with it. But there is one thing that can be done to increase the chances for survival. If cancer is detected at its latter stage, most of the time, medications are futile. The only thing that could prevent this from occurring is to be able to determine cancer at its earlier stage. One should be armed with sufficient information and the early prognosis of the disease would render cancer curable.
"I'm too afraid to find out I have it"
That is the most common excuse a person utters to avoid medical checkups. But the longer you delay the detection of it, the lesser the chances for recovery. Unlike in the ancient times, cancer is now identified as a curable disease, for as long as it is detected early. Routine checkups are done in order to confirm if there is any cell alteration that is happening inside your body.
The American Cancer Society determines several symptoms that may be associated with cancer. If you have more than one of these symptoms that have been prevailing for several weeks, consider an immediate visit to your doctor.
• Change in bowel or bladder habits
• A wound that does not heal
• Hoarseness of voice and nagging cough
• A lump in the breast
• Sudden weight loss or weight gain
• Unusual discharge or bleeding
• Nausea, headache and vomiting that persists for more than two weeks
• Difficulty in swallowing
• Obvious change in size, shape and color of a mole
• Repeated instances of infection
• Low grade fever that occurs constantly
• Chronic pain in bones and other areas of the body
How Can I Prevent the Big C?
Regular medical consultation is crucial once you've reached the age of 25. At the same time, other aspects in the prevention of the big C should also be given primary importance, which include:
• Undergoing dietary modifications
• Straying away from carcinogens, or any compound that promotes the development of cancer
• Avoiding exposure to radiation as this causes damage to the cells, or alteration of metabolism
• Smoking cessation since smoking has been associated with several types of cancer, primarily cancer of the lungs, stomach and pancreas
• Monitoring your body weight; if there is a sudden and unexplained weight loss or weight gain, consult your physician immediately.
• Being physically active and adopting a workout routine or cardiovascular activity at least 3 times a week
As always, prevention is better than cure. Take responsibility for your own health and your own life.