Friday, July 31, 2009

But Not Too Young

In the past month or so, I've learned that two of my friends are fighting cancer. One has testicular cancer and the other lymphoma. These aren't older friends who are closer in age to my parents than to me with whom I've bonded due to wacky circumstances. They're people my age, born within a year of me, and that scares me a little bit. More than that, though, it's a huge wake-up call.

Many kinds of bone, ovarian, and testicular cancers are found in a disproportionate number of young adults aged 13 to 24. Fortunately my friends have both been told that they're extremely likely to recover fully - that if you're going to get cancer, theirs is the kind to get. They were both also aware of changes to their body/health, and sought medical attention that allowed them to detect the tumors while they were still fully treatable.

So this is my very own These Gentlemen Public Service Announcement: Pay attention to yourself. Most of this blog's readership falls in the young adult category. But we're not too young, and we're definitely not invincible. And that's something I'm going to keep in mind the next time I consider venturing outside in a bathing suit without putting on sunscreen.

(Sorry if this post is a downer, but I think it's important, and I'm not really in a place where I know how to make it entertaining.)


AZ Winer said...

i believe sunscreen gives you cancer.

ali d said...

Funny story from my friend with Lymphoma:

2) Monday night I worked and was eating my last meal at about 11:30 (since you have to stop eating and drinking at midnight before surgery) and some lovely guy I had never seen before was sitting there. He clearly thought he was the type of person who was funny enough to be instantly inappropriate friends with anybody. He asks me what I was eating, I said, "chicken salad," and he goes--I kid you not--"Be careful, I hear chicken salad is known to cause cancer."

(insert stunned look.)

I was nice enough not to say anything to make him feel like the total toolbag that he is, because I thought, oh, he has no idea, he didn't mean it, etc. etc. In retrospect, I wish I had brought out my camera with the photo of my x-ray and asked, "This kind of cancer?" But between the dirty stares he got from my boyfriend and my coworker, he got his wings to go and left about 10 minutes later.

But SERIOUSLY, dude. Seriously?

So watch what you say, Winer

AZ Winer said...

actually .. no, wasn't actually serious... but thats a good story, and ill watch what i say.

Jason Heat said...

i woke up to adam getting pwned on the internets

Dennis said...

Most sunscreens have the chemical titanium dioxide which actually does increase the risk of skin cancer. There also have been studies that suggest that extensive use of sunscreen can cause DNA defects. Furthermore, some sunscreens only block the UVB radiation, which causes sunburn, not the UVA radiation, which causes cancer. Be careful what sunscreen you use. : 0

Sunbathing in itself seems kind of silly to me, especially for people who are worried about health. We do what we can to make it safer, but ultimately it's burning your skin with radiation from the sun until it changes to a more attractive color. How healthy can that get? I may also be biased in that I can never tan and get sunburn when I'm outside in the summer for more than 10 minutes.

B.Graham said...

foods that are chock-full of antioxidants that help prevent cancer: tomatoes, walnuts, berries, spinach, brussel sprouts...