If you’re concerned about developing lung cancer, there are various steps you can take to lower your chances of contracting this disease. One of the best steps you can take toward lung cancer prevention is to quit smoking (or, if you’re not a smoker, the best step is to stay away from secondhand smoke). Even if you’ve smoked for many years, it’s important to stop as soon as possible, since your risk of developing lung cancer increases the longer you’ve smoked.
Other lung cancer prevention methods
Although smoking is the largest risk factor for developing lung cancer, many people who have never smoked or been exposed to secondhand smoke still contract this disease. Here are some additional steps you can take to prevent lung cancer:
- Check for radon levels in your home. When uranium naturally breaks down in soil and rocks, it produces radon, a radioactive gas that can cause lung cancer.
- Avoid workplace carcinogens. Exposure to carcinogens—such as asbestos, arsenic, chromium and nickel—can increase your chances of developing lung cancer.
- Follow a healthy lifestyle. This includes eating a nutritious diet and regularly exercising.
The importance of lung cancer screening
It’s a smart idea to regularly get screened for lung cancer, especially if you’re a smoker (current or former). The majority of patients who are eligible to screen do not take advantage of this important diagnostic tool—only about 5% of those eligible undergo screening. Although screenings won’t actually prevent lung cancer from developing, they can help you catch any signs of cancer as soon as possible, which can improve your chances of beating the disease. Moffitt Cancer Center is working hard to expand screening to all those who qualify, as this may be a missed opportunity to identify an early stage lung cancer and potentially cure you of your cancer.
At Moffitt Cancer Center, we’re proud to offer one of the nation’s premier comprehensive lung cancer screening programs. In fact, the Lung Cancer Alliance has named us a Screening Center of Excellence. Our lung cancer screening program is open to individuals who are considered to be high-risk according to national guidelines and evidence-based practices.
To find out if you qualify for Moffitt Cancer Center’s lung cancer screening program, or to learn more about lung cancer prevention, call 1-888-663-3488 or complete a new patient registration form online.