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Cancer Control Month: A Look at Cancer News

April is Cancer Control Month, a month honoring those who are currently battling cancer and cancer survivors. Its goal is to raise awareness about cancer screenings that help prevent cancer or catch it in the early stages.

Increasing Awareness

In the United States, men have a 40.14% chance of developing cancer and a 21.34% chance of dying from cancer. Women have a 38.7% chance of developing cancer and an 18% chance of dying from cancer[1].

With statistics like these it is almost certain that if you haven’t been affected by cancer personally, you know or love someone who has faced a diagnosis.

However, thanks to better treatments and better cancer screenings, deaths due to cancer have been declining. In fact, according to Cancer.org, the death rate from cancer in the US declined by 31% from 1991 to 2018. In 2018, there was a 2.4% drop, the largest single-year drop ever recorded[2]. Yet despite the incredible advancements being made in cancer treatment, it is still the second leading cause of death in the United States[3].

Early Detection is Key

One of the goals of Cancer Control Month is to increase the early detection of cancer as it greatly increases the chance of survival[4].

Increasing awareness for cancer screenings is imperative. The earlier you catch cancer, the easier it may be to treat[5].

A cancer screening is when you check your body for cancer before you have symptoms. These can include screenings for breast, cervical, and colon cancers using tests like pap smears, mammograms, and colonoscopies[6].

Reducing Cancer Risk

Beyond raising awareness for cancer and screenings, Cancer Control month is also about understanding choices you can make in your own life that have the power to reduce your risk[7]. Leading a healthy lifestyle is the number one thing individuals can do to lower their risk, including:

-          Maintaining a healthy weight

-          Eating fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes

-          Limiting your meat intake

-          Limiting alcohol

-          Staying active

-          Avoiding smoke and tobacco

-          Protecting yourself from the sun and using sunscreen

-          Avoiding risky behaviors

-          Getting regular medical care

While these are all straightforward pieces of advice, each one can make a difference in the fight against cancer.

Vaccinations as Preventative Care

In addition to leading a healthy lifestyle, there are now vaccines available that can help treat and prevent certain types of cancer.

There are three FDA approved vaccines[8]:

-          Guardasil or Ceravix: these vaccines protect women against certain strains of human papilloma virus (HPV) which can cause cervical cancer

-          Hepatitis B Vaccine: this is a three-shot series given to children that protects against Hepatitis B virus, which can cause liver cancer

-          Provenge: A vaccine to help treat metastatic prostate cancer

There are always clinical trials being conducted to help develop even more vaccines to help treat more types of cancer.

Improving Quality of Life for Cancer Patients

A cancer diagnosis is never good news and can be extremely scary for those going through it. That’s why Cancer Control Month also focuses on helping those who are currently experiencing treatment.

While you can’t take the cancer away, there are things that you can do to help, including:

-          Having groceries delivered

-          Helping maintain the house by doing chores such as laundry, mowing the lawn, doing dishes

-          Creating a care package of that person’s favorite things or a comfy blanket to take with to treatment

-          Offering to drive to and from treatment

-          Preparing meals

-          Donating to cancer organizations close to them to help raise money to find a cure

Protecting Your Family

Cancer doesn’t just wreak havoc on a person’s health, but can also be a large financial burden. That’s why many people choose to invest in supplemental health insurance that covers a cancer diagnosis.

Cancer can strike anyone. By having supplemental insurance, if you are diagnosed with cancer there will be benefits that are paid directly to you to help with your treatment. The money arrives fast and can go to medical bills, mortgage, groceries – whatever it is that you need at the time.

Cancer Control Month is a time to take care of your own health – schedule screenings and pay attention to your lifestyle choices – and to help those around you who are already undergoing treatment and helping them to heal and get back to their lives.

Learn more about our Cancer Care Protector policy and get in touch with one of our agents today.

 

 

References:

1- Lifetime risk of developing or dying from cancer. (n.d.). Retrieved March 31, 2022, from https://www.cancer.org/cancer/cancer-basics/lifetime-probability-of-developing-or-dying-from-cancer.html

2- ACS Medical Content and News Staff. (2022, January 12). 2022 cancer facts & figures cancer: Cancer death rate drops. Retrieved March 31, 2022, from https://www.cancer.org/latest-news/facts-and-figures-2022.html

3- Mortality | cancer trends progress report. (n.d.). Retrieved March 31, 2022, from https://progressreport.cancer.gov/end/mortality

4- A proclamation on National Cancer Control Month, 2021. (2021, March 31). Retrieved March 31, 2022, from https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/presidential-actions/2021/03/31/a-proclamation-on-national-cancer-control-month-2021/

5- Cancer control month – how you can make a difference. (2021, March 31). Retrieved March 31, 2022, from https://www.nfcr.org/blog/cancer-control-month-how-you-can-make-a-difference/?gclid=CjwKCAjwgZuDBhBTEiwAXNofRHxsCASvBBcaubKqeBH1CgwD1wx9BIo4SxKpy0gACuugH33zbITWdBoCnS0QAvD_BwE

6- Cancer screening. (n.d.). Retrieved March 31, 2022, from https://www.cancer.gov/about-cancer/screening#:~:text=Screening%20can%20help%20doctors%20find,and%20be%20harder%20to%20treat

7- Cancer screening tests. (2021, August 30). Retrieved March 31, 2022, from https://www.cdc.gov/cancer/dcpc/prevention/screening.htm

8- Ellis, C. (n.d.). Reduce risk during cancer control month. Retrieved March 31, 2022, from https://www.eatright.org/health/diseases-and-conditions/cancer/reduce-risk-during-cancer-control-month

9- April is National Cancer Control month. (2015, August 06). Retrieved March 31, 2022, from https://www.cancersmoc.com/april-is-national-cancer-control-month/