If you ask your friends and family, it is probably rare that you won't find one person affected by cancer. Whether they were diagnosed themselves or have lost a loved one to the disease, cancer is quite common worldwide.
If you want to spread awareness or learn more about cancer, today might be the perfect time! World Cancer Day kicked off in 2008 by the Union of International Cancer Control and is held on February 4th every year. The goal of the holiday is to raise awareness and encourage prevention, detection, and treatment of cancer all over the world.
Today, World Cancer Day 2014 is aiming to debunk four cancer myths:
We Don't Need to Talk About Cancer
Many people feel like cancer is a hard subject to breach with patients and their caregivers. Even family members of a cancer victim might be afraid to bring it up in front of their loved one, but it is oftentimes that support can provide more for them than silence.
Truth: Talking about cancer challenges negative beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors that perpetuate myths about cancer, cause fear and stigma, and prevent people from seeking early detection and treatment.
There Are No Signs or Symptoms of Cancer
Many patients diagnosed with cancer are devastated to learn about their illness after it has progressed into the late stages of the disease. They experienced no major symptoms and never consulted a doctor for early detection of abnormal growth. Although many patients do not recall symptoms, there are little things that happen within our bodies from day to day that could alert a doctor to a bigger problem.
Truth: The success of early detection programs can be measured by a reduction in the stage of the cancer at diagnosis with earlier diagnosis associated with a reduction in the risk of dying from cancer.
There is Nothing I Can Do About Cancer
Many people think that since they have no control over the disease, nothing can be done about it. In reality, much can be done on both small and large scales. Check out some of the ways.
Truth: The implementation of policies and programmes that support a life-course approach to prevention, and strengthen the capacity of individuals to adopt healthy lifestyles choices can bring about behavioural change, which can help prevent cancer.
I Don't Have the Right to Cancer Care
It is no secret that our health care system needs some work. As a result, many people equate their socio- and economic status with their right for cancer care when diagnosed. This should never be the case - cancer care should be readily available and affordable for all. Read this story about one woman's experience with cancer in France, and her sister's in the United States.
Truth: All people have the right to access proven and effective cancer treatments and services on equal terms, and without suffering hardship as a consequence
As you might have learned from our website or previous blog posts, mesothelioma is an aggressive and incurable cancer caused by asbestos exposure. Mesothelioma is one of the least funded and researched cancers currently affecting American citizens, with the federal funding for The National Mesothelioma Virtual Bank eliminated entirely in 2013.
Mesothelioma patients are just as much at risk for the serious effects of the disease as any other cancer patient. The average life expectancy of mesothelioma victims is one year, but many have survived much longer with cutting-edge treatments.
Learn more about mesothelioma cancer on our website and share your cancer knowledge to spread awareness!
Spread Awareness. Cure all cancers.