Preventing Cancer in Women Over 50: Key Screening and Prevention Guidelines.
Cancer is one of the most deadly diseases around, and for women over 50, it can be particularly risky. Fortunately, there are now several screening and prevention guidelines that women can follow to help reduce their risk of cancer.
Breast Cancer Screening
Breast cancer is one of the most common types of cancer in women, and it’s important for women over 50 to undergo regular screenings. According to the American Cancer Society, women should have a mammogram every two years starting at age 50. If you have a family history of breast cancer, your doctor may recommend more frequent screenings.
Cervical Cancer Screening
Cervical cancer is another common type of cancer in women, but it is relatively easy to detect and treat in its earliest stages. According to the American Cancer Society, women over the age of 50 should have a Pap test every three years, or an HPV test every five years if both the Pap and HPV tests are performed together.
Colorectal Cancer Screening
Colorectal cancer is a type of cancer that affects the large intestine and rectum. The American Cancer Society recommends that women over 50 undergo regular screening for colorectal cancer. There are several different screening tests available, including a colonoscopy, fecal occult blood test, and CT colonography.
Lung Cancer Screening
Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States. If you are a smoker or former smoker over the age of 55, your doctor may recommend a low-dose CT scan as a screening test for lung cancer.
Skin Cancer Screening
Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer in the United States. Women over the age of 50 should have an annual skin exam by a dermatologist, particularly if they have a history of sunburns or skin cancer.
In addition to regular screenings, there are several other strategies that women can use to reduce their risk of cancer. The American Cancer Society recommends that women over 50 maintain a healthy lifestyle by eating a healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetables, getting regular exercise, maintaining a healthy weight, and avoiding tobacco and excessive alcohol consumption.
It’s also important for women over 50 to protect themselves from the sun, by wearing protective clothing and sunscreen, and to minimize their exposure to environmental pollutants and toxins.
Cancer is a serious disease that affects women over 50 at a higher rate. However, by following these screening and prevention guidelines, women over 50 can take steps to reduce their risk of developing cancer. Talk to your doctor about which screenings are appropriate for you and start incorporating these prevention strategies into your lifestyle today.