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Cancer Screening

Nobody wants to think about “the big C”. When it comes to cancer, most people would rather ignore the possibility that they might have it. As long as they do not feel a physical lump, they do not think about having cancer screenings What are the chances, right? It can’t possibly happen to me?
But it does happen and it happens around the world in the millions. If it were a lottery draw, the probability is not so low and you may actually be holding the winning ticket. This is the reality and this reality is not meant to scare you, but to jolt you into taking action. When it comes to cancers, prevention and early detection is the way to go.

Most forms of cancers won’t rear its ugly head until it is on an advanced stage. Because of this, in order to detect cancer, screenings are vital. Schedule a visit to your doctor and request for cancer screening, especially if your family has a history of cancer. You should also determine how at risk you are and the more at risk you are, the more you should get cancer screening. General risk factors for cancers include family history, age, gender, and lifestyle habits such as if you smoke or drink excessively.

Cancer survivors are especially vulnerable to cancers reoccurring. As such, they should be more vigilant about being one step ahead of these cancers. After overcoming their first cancer probably the last thing that cancer survivors would want to do is to battle another one, but cancer screening is vital in order for them to lessen the risk of having to go through the same harrowing ordeal over again.

The higher risk of cancer survivors developing cancers again are attributed to a number of factors including the following:

Chemotherapy—the strong effects of chemotherapy drugs may trigger secondary leukemia

Radiation therapy – especially those who received high doses of radiation therapy over larger areas of the body are at risk of developing solid tumors

Genetic mutations – there are inherited gene changes that cause a person to have an increased risk of developing secondary cancer

Cancer survivors should keep in mind that they will need screenings that are performed earlier than recommended and more often too. If you are a cancer survivor, your doctor should be able to offer you advice on this depending on what’s suited to your case. It would also be best to ask your doctor what exactly your risks are, what caused these and what steps you can take to minimize it. Educating yourself and demystifying the risks of developing second cancer can enable you to make better choices when it comes to preventing secondary cancers. Practicing healthy lifestyle such as eating healthier foods, regular exercise, cessation of smoking and avoiding alcohol also plays a major role in preventing cancers from reoccurring.