Sometimes, cancer don’t just happen; they come with various signs and symptoms that if it is detected on time, it can be prevented. But many people, who experienced these common cancer symptoms in the past, took it for granted and by the time they take action, it’s already too late. So, don’t be like those who saw these signs and blew it up.
Here are the common cancer signs to watch out for.
Change in the way a mole looks
Be on the alert if you see a strange variation in your skin or any unusual mole because we never know when the deadly skin cancer melanoma can strike. It cuts across all age groups and often appears first in the form of unusual moles. You need to go and see your doctor quickly if you spot a new mole or one that’s growing or changing color.
Persistent cough or hoarseness
Coughs that don’t go away could signal lung cancer, especially if you’re a heavy smoker. Also, a scratchy voice may serve as a sign of head and neck cancers. That’s because malignancies can directly affect your voice box or damage the nerves that control it, paralyzing your vocal cords. Experts say that head and neck cancers are on the rise in young men due to increased rates of infection with the HPV virus, which can cause the cancers.
Watch out for swollen lymph nodes in your armpit, neck, groin or breast that don’t go away after a few months. Although, some lymph nodes sometimes appear when you have cold that simply means your body is fighting an infection. But unexplained lumps that aren’t accompanied by signs of infection could be lymphoma, which tends to occur at a young age. For men, any lumps in your testicles may signal testicular cancer.
Changes in bladder habits
Bladder problems are often associated with the very old and infirm. But guess what? Adults of all ages, including many who are seemingly healthy, can have unusual bladder symptoms and they can be warning signs of problematic health conditions. Having to pee more often or more urgently than usual could be a sign of prostate cancer.
New bowel routines
If you feel there is something new or wrong about your bowel movement, don’t sweep it under the carpet, go and find out why. Colon cancer can cause long-term constipation, diarrhea, or a change in the way your poop looks. (It often appears narrower.) Some cancers have genetic links, like prostate and colon cancers, so stay more alert for new bathroom patterns, if you have a family history of any of this.
Unexplained Weight loss
When you’re not eating less or exercising more, and you experience sudden weight loss, then know that some problem are brewing somewhere. This unexplained weight loss could point to colon or liver cancer due to a phenomenon called cachexia. That’s when tumors release compounds that change your metabolism in complex ways, reducing your body’s ability to use protein and calories and wasting away muscles and fat. Pay attention to this if colon cancer runs in your family or you’re a heavy drinker.
Lingering unexplained pain
In most cases, you can pinpoint a reason your back or chest aches. However, if such lingers for three months or longer, it’s time to schedule an appointment. That’s because tumors pressing on nerves, organs, or bones can cause aches. Also, if you have severe abdominal pain that won’t go after trying different medications, then you can’t ignore that. Though there are many potential causes, several common and serious cancers like those of the stomach and pancreas have this symptom.
Blood in your phlegm could mean lung cancer, while spotting it in the toilet could signal kidney, bladder, or colon cancer. And a skin tag that bleeds could be skin cancer. Tumors can bleed themselves, or damage the blood vessels or lining of the lungs. Don’t wait before getting this checked out. If it’s severe, sudden, or you have symptoms of shock—such as a rapid pulse or a drop in blood pressure, head straight to the hospital.
Sores that don’t heal
When sores refuse to heal, then you need to check it up because some skin cancers show up this way. Sores in your mouth could be linked to oral cancer, especially if you smoke, drink, or have HPV. These are all factors that raise your risk. Ask your doctor to check your sores if they don’t go away within three- to six-months.
If you can’t gulp, it may signal head and neck cancer. Tumor may be blocking your throat. As with oral cancer, smoking, drinking, and HPV can all increase your risk. Failure to swallow is also linked with cancers of the stomach or esophagus. Though these diseases aren’t common in young men, people with reflux have a higher risk of esophageal cancer, and those with ulcers may be prone to stomach cancer.