Drinking Water and Ovarian Cancer

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Ovarian cancer is a type of cancer that can begin in either or both of the ovaries. The cancerous cells multiply quickly and form a tumor on the outside of the ovaries, inside the egg-producing cells, or inside hormone-producing cells. This type of cancer is difficult to detect until cancer has started spreading into the abdomen area. Although treatments are available, survival rates are fairly low especially if the cancer was diagnosed late. This disconcerting reality does not have to be the norm. Women should educate themselves on the risks, the symptoms, and how to prevent or diagnose cancer early. Early detection is important for effective treatment and a possible cure.

Symptoms of ovarian cancer are very similar to other common conditions and sometimes go unnoticed. The main difference is that symptoms of ovarian cancer will be persistent and will worsen. Women must not ignore relentless discomfort or worrisome pain. Proper diagnosis of the discomfort is vital to maintaining one’s health. Some of the symptoms could be swelling or bloating of the abdominal area, abdominal pain or discomfort, sudden changes in bowel or bladder habits, lack of energy, or lower back pain. These symptoms are often disregarded as harmless indigestion, constipation, or another not-so-dangerous health issue. If a woman suddenly notices symptoms that worry her then she should call the doctor immediately for an appointment.

Before any symptoms arise, one should be aware of the risk factors associated with ovarian cancer. There are several risk factors that increase the possibility of an ovarian cancer diagnosis which include a family history of ovarian cancer, personal history of cancer in the breast, uterus, or colon, or older women who have never been pregnant. Some studies have also shown that certain hormone therapies related to menopause can increase the risk of ovarian cancer. These risk factors do not guarantee a cancer diagnosis, but the risk is increased in patients with these particular factors.

There are also contaminants in the environment that increase the possibility of cancer. One known contaminant is talc; a chemical often used in baby powder, feminine products, and even cosmetics and condoms. Talcum powder has been studied and is suspected to increase the risk of ovarian cancer by over 50%. Other contaminants frequently found in many consumer products are butylparaben, red 30 lakes, dibutyl pthalate, ethlyparaben, isobutylparaben, methylparaben, and propylparaben.

Another risk factor that increases the threat of ovarian cancer is drinking polluted water. One type of contamination would be nitrates that enter the water through the soil in the ground. Nitrates are commonly associated with the increased use of commercial fertilizers, animal waste, and human waste. This pollutant is a suspected carcinogen but it is not the only dangerous element found in drinking water. Unfortunately, there are many man-made and natural water contaminants that are either toxic or radioactive and can cause cancer.

Studies have found a connection between polluted drinking water and ovarian cancer. Minimizing the amount of contamination in drinking water is a must, but first people need to be aware of what else is in the water they are drinking and how to protect themselves and their families. A quality water purification system can remove up to 99% of these harmful contaminants which can cause illness and cancer. Education is the key to a healthy lifestyle.

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