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Teens – Healthy Lifestyle Choices

Risk Factors for Cancer

In most cancers in children and teens, we don’t understand what causes the cancer. This is why raising awareness of signs and symptoms of cancer to aid early diagnosis is very important. There are only a few known causes of cancer in teens.

Known Causes

1) Current international data suggests 10% of teens diagnosed, may have a genetic predisposition to cancer. This means that when conception takes place (when the male’s sperm meets the females’ egg and the egg is fertilised), faulty nucleus genes from the father or mother or both parents may be inherited, which later result in cancer.

2) Teens with Human Immodeficiency Virus (HIV) or Aquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) are at higher risk for certain cancers such as Kaposi sarcoma and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, due to these viruses weakening their immune system.

3) Unsafe sexual practices or having sex at a young age, may put teens at risk for contracting the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) – certain strains of HPV in particular are linked to cervical, head, neck and throat cancers.

4) The use of sunbeds and experiencing bad sunburn may result in skin cancer later in life.

5) The prolonged use of steroids (to build muscles and endurance) may result in poor health and may also lead to a cancer diagnosis later in life.

 

Images Credit: Freepik


Choosing a Healthy Lifestyle

While you are receiving cancer treatment it is important to eat and drink healthily, according to your medical team’s advice and also to exercise if your medical team permits it.

Once you are in remission, you can adopt a healthy balanced lifestyle to help lower your risk for cancer into the future.

Many cancers are related to unhealthy lifestyle choices.

A balanced lifestyle includes:


Take the Test

Use CANSA’s online Lifestyle Risk Assessment Tool that can help identify health risks that you need to address and provide advice on how to lower your personal cancer risk.

Do you have a question?
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