Children’s Cancer Awareness

Libby Sessoms, Writer

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This last past month we’ve had Children’s Cancer Awareness month to acknowledge the different types of cancer children can be diagnosed with. Every year over 15,000 children under 21 are diagnosed with cancer. Being diagnosed with cancer at a young age can put a lot of pressure on the family as well as stress.

Cancer starts when cells in the body start to grow at a fast pace. Any cell in the body can become a cancer cell and spread to any part of the body. As the cancer cells begin to spread it can start to push on organs that are nearby, nerves, and also blood cells and by them doing it, it can cause some signs of cancer to start showing. Sometimes cancer can start in different places that cause it to not show up right away but once it starts growing then there will be a sign. Some cancer symptoms are having a fever, being extra tired, or losing weight quick. This is mainly because the cancer cells use up most of the body’s energy.

Getting treated for cancer early is better because then, while it’s still small, it is more likely for it not to spread to other parts of the body which is why it’s important to get treatment as soon as possible. Cancer is also not contagious, so it can’t be contracted by someone else coughing, touching, sharing meals, or breathing the same air as another person. Cancer cells in a person’s body cannot live in the body of a healthy person.

The reason for creating Children’s Cancer Awareness month is to bring light to all the different types of cancer that people may experience. Childhood cancer is the leading cause of death for many children under the age of 15. The causes of most childhood cancer are still unknown but they are not linked to the type of lifestyle or environment the kids have, unlike adult cancer. While most treatments for children are available across the United States, some aren’t available in some states, so some people would have to travel just to find or get treatment. The types of treatment administered to a child with cancer will usually depend on the type of cancer diagnosed and how advanced it is. Some treatments will include chemotherapy or even surgery. Children’s cancer isn’t always treated like adult cancer. Much of what doctors know about children’s cancer has helped them learn more about adult cancer as well.

Some of the things that usually cause children’s cancer are caused by an inherited mutation that is usually passed down from the parents to their children. Some children might take radiation therapy which is a common type of treatment. Radiation therapy is high energy particle waves that destroy the cancer cells. Many children have radiation therapy as well as chemotherapy or even surgery. Trying to stay healthy while having cancer can be fairly easy if the patient sticks to it. Eating well can help kids with cancer feel better and also cope with the side effects of having it. It is very important to stay hydrated, because one vomit a lot and may lose body liquids which leads to dehydration, and drinking plenty of water can help prevent that. Eating right can also help because every child that has cancer has a specific nutritional need to help them so it is best to talk to a nutritionist about what’s recommended. 

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