Lung Cancer Awareness Month

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Lung Cancer Awareness Month Photo

Your lungs serve the crucial purpose of helping the oxygen you breathe in to reach your red blood cells to help the rest of your body function properly. When you take good care of your lungs, you take good care of all the other parts of your body too!

What is Lung Cancer?

Cancer develops when cells in the body begin to grow out of control abnormally, and with lung cancer, this process starts with the cells in the lungs. More specifically, lung cancers typically start in the cells that make up the bronchi, the tubes at the bottom of your trachea, or windpipe, that lead into your lungs.

There are various types of lung cancer to be aware of:

Small cell lung cancer - This type of cancer occurs almost always in heavy smokers and is less common.

Non-small cell lung cancer - This term refers to all the other types of lung cancers, including squamous cell carcinoma, adenocarcinoma, and large cell carcinoma.

People who smoke or smoked in the past are at the most significant risk for developing lung cancer, but this disease is not exclusive to smokers, and anyone can develop it.

Signs and Symptoms of Lung Cancer

There are typically no symptoms to alert you to the cancer in its early stages, and the signs typically show and progress once the disease is advanced. Here are some of those sign to look for when it comes to lung cancer:

  • A cough that intensifies and doesn’t go away
  • Coughing up blood
  • Hoarseness
  • Shortness of breath and trouble breathing
  • Chest pain
  • Losing weight without trying
  • Bone pain
  • Headache

    Schedule a visit with your doctor if you are experiencing any of these symptoms and have concerns about your health and your lungs’ well-being, especially if you are currently or in the past was an avid smoker.

    How to Take Good Care of Your Lungs

    While there is no sure way to prevent lung cancer, you can minimize your risk by taking proper care of your lungs so they can function properly at all times:

  • Don’t smoke or stop smoking - If you have never smoked, don’t start. If you are currently smoking, quit now. Although easier said than done, quitting smoking is necessary as it quickly and irreversibly damages your lungs. Speak with your doctor about strategies to and stop-smoking aids to help you change your habits.
  • Avoid secondhand smoke - If you live or work near a smoker, urge them to quit and ask them to smoke outside and away from you.
  • Have your home tested for radon - Test your home’s radon levels, especially if this is a known problem in your neighborhood. High radon levels can be toxic and are able to be remedied to ensure a safer environment for you and your family.
  • Avoid carcinogens on the job - Protect yourself from exposure to chemicals while at work by following your employers’ precautions and wear a face mask at all times when told to do so.
  • Eat a healthy diet - Eat a wide variety of fruits and vegetables to ensure you are getting all the necessary vitamins and nutrients to help your body function at its best.
  • Exercise regularly - Ideally, get at least 30 minutes of exercise every day. If you don’t already exercise, start slowly and increase your time gradually.

    Lung Cancer Treatment in New York

    The experts at New York Cancer and Blood Specialists are here to help you through your cancer journey, from diagnosis to remission. We are committed to providing our patients with a personalized path through treatment and unmatched support the entire time you are with us. Visit our website or give us a call at (855) 528-7322 to learn more.