Be in the Know about Cancer
31 January 2019
World Cancer Day is celebrated globally every year on 4th February and is organised by the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC). World Cancer Day aims to save millions of preventable deaths each year by raising awareness and education about cancer.
Know fact from fiction
There’s a saying that “knowledge is power”. This saying is certainly true when it comes to cancer. Having accurate information can help you beat the chances of getting cancer. Being knowledgeable about cancer helps you recognise early warning signs. By knowing what’s normal for your body, recognising unusual changes and seeking medical help quickly, you can help find cancer early. That makes it easy to treat and even cure.
Secondly, knowing the facts about cancer can help you make informed choices about your health. For example, you may want to get screenings for some types of cancer as part of your annual check-ups. The screenings can test for signs of developing it early. What’s more, by knowing the facts about cancer you can teach family, friends and colleagues about common signs and symptoms.
Also, being in the know can help counter your own fears and misconceptions about cancer. Awareness, knowledge and understanding can help ensure that your fears don’t prevent you or a loved one from finding cancer early and seeking the treatment and care that’s needed.
What you can do to reduce your risk for cancer
Preventing, detecting and treating cancer early can save up to 3.7 million lives every year. These daily habits can help put the odds in your favour for avoiding cancer.
Lots of daily lifestyle habits like what you eat, your activity levels, and your behaviours can reduce your risk for getting cancer. One of the best things you can do to lower your chances of getting many types of cancer is to not smoke. If you quit smoking, within hours of your last cigarette, your health starts to get better. In fact, after a few years of quitting smoking, your chances of getting cancer start to drop.
Other things you can do to cut your risk for cancer are to eat well, stay at a healthy weight and keep active. Practicing good behaviours like protecting your skin from the sun’s ultraviolet rays, drinking alcohol in moderation, practicing safe sex, and avoiding toxins at work and at home can all help put the odds of avoiding cancer in your favour, too.
Finally, taking proactive steps like getting regular check-ups, screenings and the HPV vaccine can also help lower your chance of dealing with cancer in the future.
Source: Based on information from the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC), 2018 and Healthwise, Incorporated, 3 May 2018. This material is provided for informational/educational purposes only. It is not intended as medical/clinical advice.