10 Risk Factors For Head And Neck Cancer
Head and neck cancer is very common in India and constitutes 30% of all reported cancers in the country. Cancer is a condition where abnormal mitosis forms harmful lumps of tissues called tumours. It divides uncontrollably, spreads, and invades other human body parts, a condition known as metastasis and the tumour is called malignant. Head and neck cancer refers to abnormal cells that form around the throat, nose, sinuses, larynx, and mouth. Read this article to learn more about head and neck cancer risk factors.
What are the head and neck cancer risk factors?
Many researchers have delved deep into head and neck cancer cases and their causes. As a result, there are 10 risk factors that people should be aware of to prevent the possibility of head and neck cancer.
A study published in the journal PubMed Central cited tobacco use as the major reason behind the prevalence of head and neck cancer amongst Indians. It is because tobacco has at least 70 chemicals that cause cancer. In addition, 80% of head and neck cancers are linked to tobacco use, including smoking cigarettes, cigars, pipes, and chewing tobacco.
Heavy alcohol consumption has been linked to cancers of the mouth region, pharynx, larynx, and oesophagus. People are advised to consume alcoholic beverages in moderation or avoid them entirely unless they are intended for medical use under the supervision of a physician.
EBV is a human herpesvirus type that causes infectious mononucleosis. EBV is linked to nasopharyngeal cancer in people, which is a condition where cancer cells form in the nasopharynx tissues.
Poor oral hygiene leaves a person vulnerable to infections that can also conjure abnormal cell division and cancer.
People who consume marijuana are vulnerable to head and neck cancer. A study published in the National Library of Medicine mentioned how molecular alterations are seen more in bronchial mucosa specimens of marijuana smokers when compared to non-marijuana smokers.
People are likely to develop cancers in head and neck region when certain chemicals, asbestos, wood dust, and paint fumes are present. It is advised that people cover their faces and wash them frequently.
The body s immune system has the power to identify and kill the neoplasms developing in various parts of the human body. A weak immune system is associated with developing head and neck cancer. AIDs (Acquired Immuno Deficiency Syndrome) affects the bodys immune system, leaving it vulnerable to various cancers.
How to avoid head and neck cancer risk?
A healthy lifestyle is essential to avoid cancers of any kind. Since head and neck cancer is linked to tobacco, alcohol and drugs, it is more beneficial to avoid them altogether. Besides the cancer risk, tobacco usage is linked to heart disease, lung disease, diabetes, stroke, and chronic obstructive
pulmonary disease (COPD). Alcohol affects a person’s liver and gut health
A healthy lifestyle also involves a balanced diet with enough protein, carbohydrates, fat, vitamins, minerals, and fibre. Proper nutrition ensures a hormone balance, a strong immune system, and resistance against infections, and other health issues, including cancer.
Several studies have linked oral cancer with HPV infection. Therefore, people should take the HPV vaccine to prevent oral cancers, notably tongue and tonsil cancer.
People who are exposed to toxic occupational and environmental particles like asbestos, wood dust, and paint fumes should wear a facemask. Wash hands and face regularly using a disinfectant to remove possible residue.
Healthy lifestyle habits are essential to lead a healthy and happy life. It is better to avoid self-destructive habits like smoking, drinking and doing drugs. It is imperative to spread more awareness about the importance of healthy habits to avoid not just cancer but other health hazards. It is completely on us to protect our health.
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