A lot of things happen in November. The color of the leaves change, the Starbucks red cups come back, elections are held and the Halloween decorations become Christmas decorations. Thanksgiving is prevalent in our thoughts, and the nation celebrates Peanut Butter Lovers Month. Amid the holiday spirit, we shouldn’t forget that November is also Lung Cancer Awareness Month and Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month. To spread the awareness through social media, here are some facts about lung, pancreatic and prostate cancer, and what you can do to help.
1. Lung cancer is still the leading cause of death for men and women in the U.S. More people die of lung cancer that those do by colon, breast and prostate cancer combined.
2. A nonsmoker’s chance of getting lung cancer can increase up to 20-30 percent if exposed to secondhand smoke at home or at work.
3. More than 228,000 people are diagnosed with lung cancer every year. The survival rate is 35 percent when the cancer is detected early.
1. Pancreatic cancer is one of the few cancers that have not had a significant increase in survival rates over 40 years.
2. The average life expectancy after diagnosis with metastatic disease (the spreading of cancer from the original site to another location) ranges from three to six months, and 94 percent of victims will die within a five-year period.
3. Pancreatic cancer is hard to detect because there are no tools to catch it at its early stages when surgical removal is still a possibility.
1. In the United States, about one in seven men is diagnosed with prostate cancer in his lifetime.
2. Prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related death in men in the U.S., behind lung cancer.
3. There are 2.5 million men alive today who have been diagnosed with prostate cancer.
With these facts in mind, it’s easy to help out on campus. Although we as UCLA students have limited options to help directly combat cancer, we can join clubs and promote awareness through the avenue we know best: social media. The American Cancer Society hosts Relay For Life on campus, an event in which hundreds of students come together to run on behalf of those who are fighting cancer or who have lost their battles.
Many clubs, sororities and fraternities hold charity events that donate to research funds and organizations. In addition, some of you may have noticed the Snapchat geotag the first day of November, which was an orange mustache. The “No-Shave November” trend, promoted by the Movember Foundation, is utilizing social media to get the word out about growing mustaches to increase awareness about men’s health. Awareness is nothing without action, so spread the word and get involved.