While it is true that bladder cancer is the fourth most common cancer in men, it is actually much less likely in women. In fact, while men have about a 1 in 27 chance of being diagnosed with bladder cancer than women who are closer to 1 in 89. However, it is still relatively common, increasingly so for those over the age of 55. It is impossible to say whether any holistic measures can definitively prevent cancers, however there are a few lifestyle changes you can make to drastically improve your odds.
1.Don’t “Hold It.”
While the occasional crisis of finding a restroom won’t give you cancer, it is extremely important to treat your bladder with respect and empty it often. Holding urine when you feel the urge to urinate forces your body to hold onto toxins and other substances the body needs to eliminate. The concentrated urine is irritating to the bladder lining, and can distend the muscles around the bladder making proper control and complete elimination difficult over time. These weaknesses of the bladder are what can lead to various kinds of pelvic dysfunctions such as incontinence, bladder and kidney infections, pelvic muscles tears and eventually even cancer.
2.Drink Plenty of Water
Water is the ultimate substance for health. Drinking eight or more glasses a day helps to flush your body of impurities, even potentially cancer-causing impurities, and also gives your bladder plenty of opportunities to function properly throughout the day. If you know you aren’t getting enough, start slowly by adding an extra glass to your routine and build up your intake.
3.Limit Exposure to Risky Substances
Smokers are at least three times more likely to get bladder cancer than non-smokers. Alcohol is a diuretic and bladder irritant that can chronically irritate or injure the bladder if abused. Arsenic in water sources and exposure to industrial chemicals in the workplace are also significant risk factors in contracting bladder cancer. Limiting or eliminating your exposure to these substances can drastically improve your chances of avoiding this disease.
When typical cancer-causing risk factors are eliminated, the main defense against bladder cancer is a generally healthy lifestyle. Plenty of water, activity, fresh fruits and vegetables are the best ways to fuel your body to run as optimally as possible, which is the best way to avoid illnesses and cancers of all sorts. If you believe you may have a pelvic illness or injury, or if you’d like to discuss your bladder cancer risk factors with a professional, schedule an appointment online or call Arkansas Urology at 800-255-1762.