The human body has trillions of cells that combine to form skin, muscle, bone, breast and blood. Normally cells grow and divide, to create more cells when required. The cells are conditioned to die after a limited number of divisions, and should be replaced with new cells. However, sometimes, these old cells refuse to die and develop the ability to divide in excess and damage surrounding cells. These abnormal cells eventually grow into cancer.
The most common risk factors for cancer include alcohol, tobacco, exposure to the sun or radiation, chemicals and other substances, some viruses and bacteria, some hormones, poor nutrition, insufficient physical activity, or being overweight. They also include things that cannot be controlled, like age and family history.
A bacterial or viral infection is not always the cause of cancer. Infections are linked to about 15% to 20% of cancers, worldwide. The Epstein-Barr virus can cause lymphomas and mononucleosis. Hepatitis B and C can cause liver cancers. Human papillomavirus can cause cervical cancers. Some viruses directly affect the cell DNA causing uncontrollable growth. While some infections cause long-term inflammation leading to cancer, others attack the immune system causing cancer.
Cancer can affect people in poor health as well as those physically fit. People who have very poor immunity have an increased risk of developing certain types of cancer. However, most cancers are caused by a combination of factors that may include smoking, Alcohol use, genetic disposition, poor health, physical inactivity, overweight, and exposure to chemicals.
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Cancer is caused by changes in the cell DNA. These changes are triggered by factors like smoking cigarettes or UV rays from the sun, for example. Doctors say that some people can tolerate more exposure to a trigger than others can. People who have a higher threshold of tolerance are less likely to get cancer compared to the one who is easily affected by such triggers. The threshold of tolerance seems to be an inherited factor.
Yes, smoking a cigarette, beedi or any kind of smoke will increase your chances of getting cancer. Chewing Tobacco or pan increases your chances of getting head and neck cancers, oesophagus (swallowing tube), stomach, pancreas, kidney, bladder, uterus, cervix, ovary, colon, rectum, and even Blood Cancer.
Yes, Alcohol can cause various types of cancer. Alcohol itself causes harm and it does not matter what form of Alcohol you drink. Drinking Alcohol raises the risk of mouth cancer, cancer of the pharynx (upper throat), cancer of the oesophagus (food pipe), cancer of the larynx (voice box), cancer of the breast, cancer of the intestines and cancer of the liver. Alcohol enters our bloodstream and can cause damage throughout the body.
It is a popular misconception that injuries can cause cancer. Cancer is not related to falls, fractures, broken bones or any such injuries. Sometimes a person may visit a doctor for what is thought to be an injury, and at that time, cancer is found. Yet the damage was not causing the cancer; the cancer was already there. It also sometimes happens that a person will remember an injury that happened long ago in the location cancer is found.
Chemical and pollutants have caused cancer but in a very small percentage of cases. Prolonged exposure to a few chemicals in some jobs may cause certain types of cancers like Lung Cancer and bladder cancer. Nearly all of these chemicals have been identified and are regulated nowadays.
Cancer can spread in several ways.
They can invade the adjacent tissues directly.
They may use the lymph system as transportation from one organ to another.
They may also travel across the bloodstream to other areas of the body.
No. Cancer is not a contagious disease and it cannot spread from one person to another. The only scenario in which cancer may spread from one person to another is No. Cancer is not a contagious disease and it cannot spread from one person to another. The only scenario in which cancer may spread from one person to another is in the event of organ or tissue transplant, from a cancer patient.
Cancer cannot be transmitted through sexual intercourse. However, cancer-causing viruses can be transmitted from one person to another through unprotected sexual intercourse. Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) that causes Cervical Cancer in females and anal cancer in males is an example.Cancer cannot be transmitted through sexual intercourse. However, cancer-causing viruses can be transmitted from one person to another through unprotected sexual intercourse. Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) that causes Cervical Cancer in females and anal cancer in males is an example.
It is believed that only 5-10 per cent of all cancers are transmitted from parents to children. Genetic tests for hereditary cancer can tell whether a person who has a family history of cancer also has the same cell DNA changes.
The World Health Organization's International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has a list of carcinogens, which are substances capable of causing cancer). Foods and drinks the IARC considers carcinogenic include:
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Cancer is widespread, but it is not an epidemic. An epidemic means a very rapid increase in the number of cases, and there is no such change in most cancers. There has been a decline in some cancers, such as the stomach, and a small, steady rise in some cancers, such as Breast Cancer. This rise may be partially due to a stronger diagnosis.
You can prevent cancer by following these practices:
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We can reduce the risk of cancer by: