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Causes of Cancer

Smoking can cause cancer

Even scientists are unable to pinpoint why some people get cancer while others don’t. The main causes of cancer are environmental, hereditary and lifestyle factors. Each cancer type has its own risk factor. Some common risk factors are environmental carcinogens, ultraviolet radiation, alcohol, bad diets and tobacco. You can greatly reduce the risk of getting cancer by taking precautions like avoiding smoking, alcohol abuse, sun exposure and consuming a healthy diet.

Though family history, gender, race and age are unchangeable factors, you can still make healthy lifestyle choices and go for regular screenings. In this article, we reveal useful information about the causes of cancer which can help you take precautions to avoid this dreaded ailment.

Causes of Cancer

Radiation
Repeated exposure to x-rays and radiation therapies raise the risk of getting leukemia, and cancers of the stomach, lung, thyroid and breasts.

Ultraviolet (UV) Radiation
Exposure to the sun’s UV radiation can cause melanoma and related types of skin cancer. UV rays are harmful as they can also cause skin damage and premature aging. Even artificial UV radiation sources like tanning booths and sun lamps are also risk factors for skin cancer. Use sunscreen and protective clothing while going out in the sun to reduce your risk of developing skin cancer.

Viruses
Viruses like the Epstein Barr virus, human papillomaviruses (HPV) and hepatitis B and C can raise cancer risk. Immune system ailments like AIDS can also make the patient more vulnerable to cancer.

Harmful Chemicals
Prolonged exposure to harmful chemicals like benzene, radon, asbestos, nickel, uranium and pesticides can also cause cancer.

Tobacco
Tobacco smoking is a leading cause of lung cancer. Smokers are also vulnerable to cancers of the cervix, kidney, bladder, pancreas, esophagus, larynx and mouth. They can also contract rectal, colon, prostate, liver or stomach cancer. Chewing tobacco can cause throat, tongue and mouth cancer. The good news is quitting smoking reduces the chances of developing cancer.

Alcohol Abuse
Heavy drinkers are vulnerable to cancers of the liver, larynx, esophagus, throat and mouth. Alcohol abuse causes thousands of cancer deaths annually in the US. A little self-control and awareness can help you avoid over-consumption of alcohol and reduce the risk of cancer.

Bad Diet
High cholesterol and high-fat diets raise the risk of prostate, uterus and colon cancer. Obesity increases the risk of ovarian, colon, uterus, pancreatic and prostate cancer. Ensure your diet is rich in low-fat foods, minerals, vitamins and fiber. Lifestyle and nutrition factors cause thousands of cancer deaths in the US every year.

Summary
Regular screening can help early detection of skin, mouth, testes, prostate, cervix, rectum, colon and breast cancers which can greatly enhance the chances of successful treatment. Skin and breast cancer can be detected early through self-examination. We hope this article on the causes of cancer will help you recognize and avoid the risk factors to enjoy good health and happiness.

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