Can You Reduce the Risk for Lung Cancer?
By Kevin Edwards, President
In your role as a family caregiver, being aware of the risks you’re senior faces is one of the most important things you can do. Understanding these risks allows you to better evaluate your parent’s health, recognize changes that could indicate serious problems, and ensure they are getting the care and support they need at all times.
One such risk is lung cancer. Each year throughout the United States more than 230,000 new cases of lung cancer are diagnosed, and a very high percentage of these are among older adults. The risk for developing lung cancer increases with age, but there are various other factors that could increase the possibility that your parent will experience lung cancer. Fortunately, there are ways you can help to protect your parent, reducing their risk and strengthening at their health throughout their later years.
Some ways you can reduce the risk for lung cancer include:
Encourage your parent to eat a healthy, balanced diet. Getting all the nutrients they need supports best functioning for your parent’s body, and encourages a strong immune system, cell renewal, and energy.
Stop all tobacco use. The vast majority of deaths associated with lung cancer are related to smoking. In fact, up to 90 percent of deaths from lung cancer involve smoking as a contributing factor. If your senior smokes, encourage them to stop immediately. Every day your parent doesn’t smoke, their risk decreases.
Avoid secondhand smoke. Even if your parent does not smoke, if they are exposed to secondhand smoke, their risk for developing and dying from lung cancer are greatly increased. Encourage them to stay away from secondhand smoke, including not allowing smoking in or around their home or vehicle.
Avoid environmental pollutants. As much as possible, encourage your parent to avoid pollutants in the air. This includes both inside and outside. Radon, asbestos, chemical dust, smoke, smog, and other pollutants irritate the lungs and put them at risk.
Making home health care a part of your care routine for your aging loved one is one of the best ways you can help them at pursue better health and a higher quality of life as they age in place. Your senior is an individual, which means even if they are struggling with challenges and limitations that are common among older adults, they should not receive a generic set of services. Instead, they deserve personalized, dedicated care designed to not only manage their challenges, but also to address their personality, preferences, and goals. This allows them to stay healthy and safe, but also to feel more independent and enjoy greater fulfillment throughout their later years.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering Home Health Care Services in the Leawood KS area, please contact the caring staff at Elder Care of Kansas City, today. Proudly serving Jackson, Clay, Platte and Cass Counties in Missouri as well as Johnson and Wyandotte Counties in Kansas for over 30 years. Call us at 816-333-3322.
Prior to purchasing Elder Care, Kevin spent over 20 years in the health insurance industry.In his most recent position, he was in a financial operations role with Humana where he worked with doctors, nurses and other health professionals developing programs to keep Humana members healthy.Their focus on primary care and medication adherence improved the lives of thousands of seniors in Kansas City and the surrounding area.
Kevin and his wife, Lori, have three children.Kevin has Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from the University of Missouri.