World Cancer Day

Recognizing World Cancer Day and Self Care Therapies

Who’s behind World Cancer Day?

World Cancer Day takes place every year on February 4th with awareness initiatives taking place around the globe. Its mission is to prevent millions of deaths each year by raising awareness and education about cancer and pressing governments and individuals across the world to take action against the disease. It is an initiative of the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC), the largest and oldest international cancer organization.

Awareness events happening around the globe aim to unite colleagues, friends, families, and the local community for World Cancer Day. These events raise awareness and make a difference.

Here in the US, according to the Center for Disease Control (CDC):
  • There were 602,350 cancer deaths in the United States in 2020
  • Cancer was the second leading cause of death, after heart disease,
  • 284,619 were among females and 317,731 among males.
  • Lung cancer was the leading cause of cancer death, accounting for 23% of all cancer deaths.
    In 2022, it is projected that 1.9 million people will be newly diagnosed with cancer in the United States. An estimated 287,850 women and 2,710 men being diagnosed with breast cancer, making it the most common type cancer diagnosis. Source https://seer.cancer.gov/statfacts/html/common.html

    Research initiatives are ongoing but there are many things you can empower yourself with now the help ease this difficult journey. For those of you dealing with a diagnosis or those of you supporting something with cancer, it’s important to dedicate time for your mental and physical health here are some topics to consider.

    Mental Health Impact

    A cancer diagnosis affects everyone in your circle and can have a huge impact on mental health, adding stress and anxiety to an already unhealthy body. This can lead to tension, lack of sleep, fatigue and more pain on top of everything else you are now dealing with. It’s important to have the right support in place for both your physical and mental needs whether you are preparing for treatment, going through it now or are on the road to recovery. Reach out for help and lean on those who care about you for support, you don’t need to be going through this alone.

    Self Care, Alternative Therapies and Activity

    Self care for you and those caring for you is critical and can play a big role in recovery and in preventing other health concerns. It is important to invest time in you and your healing and there are many ways you can improve not only recovery but lay a path for some healthier habits going forward.

    Exercise/Activity

    Exercise is often recommended by your care-provider and can help manage common symptoms during and after your cancer treatment. Mild exercise is recommended to reduce some of that stress and tension and can improve your sleep helping boost recovery and energy levels. Many studies promote exercise to help people with cancer live longer while improving overall quality of life.

    Vibration plates are a perfect low impact way to get things moving. The gentle movements of plate create an “environment” that makes the exercises or stretches more effective, in less time and with less effort. You can even massage yourself to relieve tight muscles and stiff joints while offering a big boost of circulation and lymph to help your body expedite recovery. Lifepro has a variety of plates and numerous how-to videos to help support you.

    Having good days and bad days as you go through treatment and recovery can make travelling to your gym or athletic club a non option. Treadmills, stationary bikes, and exercise step platforms are other great pieces of equipment to consider. You can work at your own pace in the comfort of your own home and blast some tunes to help get you in the zone.

    Massage

    Research has shown that massage can be an effective way to relieve aches and pain in people with cancer and may also contribute to reduced anxiety, fatigue and stress. Many of our Lifepro members know the benefits regular massage can offer.

    Be sure to seek a knowledgeable massage therapist and discuss any do it yourself massage therapies you may be considering with your care-provider. Many cancer treatment facilities have massage therapy available or van refer you to an experience massage therapist that is familiar with your needs.

    There are many at home massage therapies that are not only affordable but easily accessible making consistency in your self care easier and often more realistic to manage. Having home massage devices is a great way to keep the self care going when traveling to a facility is challenging or not cost effective.

    Light Therapy

    Many cancer treatment centers already incorporate light therapies in combination with photosensitizing drugs into their cancer treatments to boost recovery and relaxation. There are many associated health benefits to using light therapy and there are many do it yourself options for use at home.

    Red light therapy has become a popular treatment for everything from healing skin surface conditions to managing aches and pains. It energizes our cells, helping them to perform their functions better. There is research ongoing using light therapies for both cancer treatment and prevention.

    Infrared light therapies can help boost detoxification during and after treatment, while offering an amazing way to soothe and relieve stress and tension. Boosting circulation and lymph further expedites the healing process. Poor circulation leads to poor nutrition and oxygen delivery to our cells, cancer cells do not thrive in high oxygen, so improving circulation can help reverse this.

    Learn more about the advantages of Lifepro’s non invasive light therapy tools in our previous blog article Red Light + Near-Infrared Light Together for Maximum Benefits. 

    Author

    Joel Gottehrer

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