Cancer is a disease which affects 1 in 3 people in this country at some stage in their lives, usually when they are over 60 years of age. The good news is that at least 2 out of 3 cancer-related deaths are believed to be preventable.
There are nearly 200 different types of cancer. Today many of them may be cured if they are detected early. Yet although there is continuous progress in research and improvement in treatments, some types of cancer are still gaining ground throughout Europe. There are ways that you can reduce your risk.
In many cases, the symptoms of cancer don't show until well after the disease has taken hold. And even though the human body has its own natural defence mechanisms, some of the things we do can increase our risk. Each of us can work to improve our own lifestyle. It's never too late to start.
A number of cancers are curable if they are detected in their early stages. So if you are concerned about any changes or signs in your body, see your doctor without delay.
If every European citizen was committed to following the guidelines set out in the European Code against Cancer, potentially 125,000 cancer deaths could be avoided each year.
Make a healthier lifestyle your goal.
These improvements will help you reduce your chance of developing cancer and will improve other aspects of your health. A healthy lifestyle also provides the benefit of reducing your risk of heart disease, lung disease and premature ageing of the skin.
While certain problems may not seem serious, they may prove to be warning signs for the early stages of cancer. Such signs include a change in the appearance of a mole, a sore that won't heal or the appearance of a lump.
Some seemingly harmless symptoms may be telltale signs for your doctor, such as persistent coughing or hoarseness, prolonged constipation or diarrhoea, or unexplained weight loss.
Women need special attention in order to detect the earliest signs of breast or cervical cancer. These types of cancer have a better chance of cure if they are detected and treated early. Screening on a regular basis can detect such cancers -- well before symptoms are apparent. The tests are simple and most women experience only slight discomfort.
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