Constant coughing, chest pain, passing sleepless nights due to breathing difficulties and difficulty in concentrating on work because of a nagging headache, could be signs of lung cancer.
“The symptoms of lung cancer include chest pain, hoarseness, breathing problems, coughing up blood, bone pain, loss of appetite, headache, wheezing, bronchitis or pneumonia. Thus, it is essential to notice the symptoms at the right time which can aid further treatment and save one’s life,” said Dr. Ramakant Deshpande, Surgical Oncologist, Asian Cancer Institute, Mumbai.
“Smoking damages the cells that line the lungs and can give a tough time to the lungs. The lung tissue undergoes changes when one inhales cigarette smoke which contains cancer-causing substances known as carcinogens,” added Dr Deshpande.
Thus, the cells may get damaged and one can suffer from lung cancer. Second hand smoking can raise the risk of lung cancer too. Passive smoking is dangerous, explained Dr Deshpande.
“The possible options of lung cancer could be surgery- wherein a doctor may remove the cancerous lung tissue or the surrounding tissues where cancer may have spread. Likewise, chemotherapy and radiation therapy can also be advised. Taking over-the-counter medications is a strict no no. Do not self-medicate at all as it is risky,” he further explained.
According to the WHO, quitting smoking is not only beneficial for lungs but overall health as well. Quitting smoking can bring down blood pressure and heart rate. It also enhances circulation and lung function. Not only this, it may also cut down the risk of lung cancer.
Dr Deshpande suggests that an individual must make sure that he incorporates fruits and vegetables into his diet. Opt for a lot of vitamins and minerals. He should eat foods that are high in fibre – fruits, cereals and vegetables, and stay hydrated by drinking a lot of water. Opting for ginger, and berries which are jam-packed with antioxidants can be good for health.