When people are afraid of something, incorrect information can spread like wildfire. When you have fear it is much easier to believe more bad things about what you fear than actually questioning the information you are hearing. Here are 5 big myths about cancer that you need to know today.
The risk of dying from cancer is increasing
This is completely not true in modern countries. In fact, the risk of dying is decreasing as we get better at diagnosing and treating cancer. The likelihood of dying from cancer has dropped steadily since the 19902. Five-year survival rates for some cancers, such as breast, prostate, and thyroid cancers, now exceed 90 percent. Not only that, but the risk of developing certain cancers is also declining as people quit smoking and take other lifestyle steps to reduce their cancer risk.
Pollution is a greater risk factor for lung cancer than smoking
This is untrue. While high levels of pollution can increase the risk of lunch cancer, the increase is minuscule compared to smoking.
Physical injuries later in life cause cancer
It is genetic changes, no physical injuries, that cause most cancers.
Electronic devices like cell phones and microwaves cause cancer
Numerous studies have debunked the link between cell phones and brain cancer, and between microwaves and cancer. Cancer is caused by genetic mutations, and cell phones emit a type of low-frequency energy that does not damage genes.
How you live when you’re young has little effect on your risk of cancer later.
In the case of sunburn, this is untrue. A single serious sunburn in your teens can set you up for melanoma, the most serious form of skin cancer, 30 years later. Smoking for even a year creates genetic damages in lung tissue cells that can trigger cancerous cells decades later. In fact, some studies are now finding that the seeds of cancer could be sown in the womb – based on what your mother did when she was pregnant with you.
Artificial sweetener cause cancer
This is untrue. Researchers have conducted many studies on the safety of the artificial sweeteners like Saccharin, aspartame and sucralose and found no evidence that they cause cancer in humans. This is why these sweeteners are approved by the Food and Drug Administration for sale in the United States.
Cancer is contagious
Cancer is not a contagious disease that easily spreads from person to person. The only situation in which cancer can spread from one person to another is in the case of organ or tissue transplantation.
In some people, cancers may be caused by certain viruses (some types of human papillomavirus, or HPV, for example) and bacteria (such as Helicobacter pylori). While a virus or bacterium can spread from person to person, the cancers they sometimes cause cannot spread from person to person.
Antiperspirants and deodorants cause breast cancer
Not true. The best studies so far have found no evidence linking the chemicals typically found in antiperspirants and deodorants with changes in breast tissue.
Hair Dye increases your risk for developing cancer
There is no evidence that personal hair dye use increases the risk of cancer. Some studies suggest, however, that hairdressers and barbers who are regularly exposed to large quantities of hair dye and other chemical products may have an increased risk of bladder cancer.
If you are afraid of something the best way to combat your fear is to know the facts. I hope exposing these myths helps to ease you mind.
Come back on Wednesday when I start to focus on what you can start doing today to prevent cancer now and in the future.
Giving you the most current and up to date advice on living a longer and active life.
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