What Are Environmental Factors That Cause Cancer?

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Cancer is a genetic disease, which means that the disease is caused by changes in our genes. These changes can be caused by environmental factors, can be familial, or can be passed down from parents, and the changes mutate DNA so that cells do not divide in a normal fashion.
Normally, cells in the body divide and reproduce regularly to keep our body functioning properly. Sometimes though, cells reproduce uncontrollably or do not die when needed. These cells, which we call cancer cells, build up and form tumors, which are solid masses of tissue. Tumors are aided by cancer cells and can be malignant or benign. If the tumor is malignant, then it spreads to and invades nearby tissues. Benign tumors do not spread but are usually very large. …show more content…

This form of cancer transmission is considered environmental, which includes everything outside of the body that interacts with it and the lifestyle of the individual. Environmental causes of cancer make up about two-thirds of all cancer cases. Of the major cases of cancer, 20-30% are linked to obesity and physical inactivity (NIEHS, 2003). Other major lifestyle choices that can cause cancer include smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, poor diet, excessive sunlight exposure, and sexual behavior that increases exposure to certain viruses. Environmental factors that contribute to cancer also include exposure to certain medical drugs, hormones, radiation, viruses, bacteria, and chemicals that can be found in air, water, food, and workplace.
The effect that environmental factors have on cancer can be seen throughout the world, in that different environmental factors can cause different types of cancer, which is seen in the types of cancer people of a particular area contract. Therefore, cancer rates and types vary by country. Environmental causes can also be linked to familial contraction of cancer. A person who inherits genes that will not be able to fight off an environmental carcinogen as easily as someone who does not have those inherited genes is more likely to get …show more content…

Make sure you get immunized for Hepatitis B and HPV. Get regular medical care such as keeping up on vaccinations and getting regular check ups. Using tobacco in general increases the risk for cancer, whether it is smoking or chewing tobacco. Exposure to secondhand smoke increases the risk for lung cancer in nonsmokers. Avoiding tobacco is one of the most important decisions about health a person can make and is also an important part of preventing

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