Five Things You Need to Know about Colon Cancer

It’s important to know the facts about colon cancer because as you get older your risk for the disease increases. Here are five things you need to know about colon cancer so that you can make the best choices for your life.

1. Colon cancer is deadly. Colon cancer is also called a “silent killer” because it doesn’t always have symptoms or signs until it’s late in the progression. By that time it may be too late to save your life. That’s why it’s important to catch it early.

2. After age 50 you should participate in colon cancer screening. This is the age when you should begin having a colonoscopy at least every 5 years. If you have polyps or suspicious areas in the colon, you may need to have this test more often.

There are also less invasive tests that use stool samples to look for signs of cancer in your bowel. While it may not be much fun collecting a stool sample, it’s not as involved as preparing for and participating in a colonoscopy.

3. You’re more at risk if you have a family history. If one or more of your close biological relatives has had colon cancer, you’re more at risk for developing it. It’s important to let your healthcare provider know about this.

If you have a family history you may need to begin screening earlier. You and your doctor can determine a plan of action to make sure you catch any polyps early. Polyps can be removed early, but after they’ve developed into cancer it becomes a much more serious problem.

4. Colon cancer is preventable. With careful screening and a healthy lifestyle, you can prevent colon cancer from developing. Eating a diet that’s high in fiber and participating in regular exercise are essential for prevention.

Colon cancer is higher in populations of people who are overweight or obese, so trying to stay as close to your ideal weight as possible is a good thing. You’ll also want to make sure you drink plenty of water so that your system is lubricated.

5. Other bowel disorders can put you at risk for colon cancer. Some conditions in the bowel can actually make it more likely that you develop cancer. That’s why it’s important to screen early and have a good relationship with your doctor.

People who suffer from Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis have a higher risk of developing colon cancer. These are diseases where the lining of the large intestine becomes chronically inflamed. This can cause cells to begin to grow abnormally.

Paying attention to your body and taking responsibility for your health can help you to avoid this deadly disease. Early screening and a healthy lifestyle can help you to prevent it. Now that you know the facts about colon cancer, it’s important to look at your lifestyle and see if you are at risk.

Learn more about your health online when you read the rest of our information here about: Bowel cancer and Colon Cancer

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