When you think of a person being diagnosed with cancer, it is common to assume that the patient is an adult and well prepared to receive the news from his or her doctor. According to the National Cancer Institute, more than 15,000 adolescents are diagnosed with childhood cancer every year. That’s more than 15,000 families that have to figure out how they are going to keep their precious children healthy, mentally motivated, and strong enough to fight this deadly disease. Change for Hope is one of many childhood cancer research funding initiatives throughout the country that are making efforts to find a cure. Here’s why childhood cancer needs to be eradicated and what doctors and researchers are doing to reach this goal.
There’s a definitively calm and joyous mood that you can feel when you enter any of the nation’s childhood cancer hospitals. The medical facilities are filled with natural sunlight, cheerful drawings, and brightly colored wallpapers so that the decor feels alive. These are the hospitals where many children fighting and recovering from adolescent cancer come to be treated and even stay in for extended periods. Some of the families that are served by these children’s hospitals wouldn’t be able to afford treatment for their children if they had to depend solely on their medical insurance coverage. By way of donations, philanthropists, and the kindness of dedicated doctors and researchers, many children with cancer are being helped.
Education About Childhood Cancer
Children as young as a few months old can be diagnosed with adolescent cancer. Unlike adults who develop cancer, childhood cancer can’t be traced to unhealthy lifestyle choices. People need to know that children are at risk for cancer, whether it’s through genetics, environmental factors, or otherwise. Pediatricians are trained to screen for childhood cancer and parents are learning that children experiencing any type of strange symptoms should be tested for cancer if there is any suspicion. Students and teachers in schools are also learning about adolescent cancer, whether it’s because a fellow classmate is fighting the disease or because the school is hosting a fundraiser.
Rooting Out Adolescent Cancer
There’s not a cure for childhood cancer yet, but doctors are hoping that some of the most effective treatments will keep more patients fighting until a permanent solution is found. Children who are treated quickly after being diagnosed have a better chance at survival. This means that more children need to visit the pediatrician regularly and get their yearly physicals completed on time. A lot of children with cancer go undiagnosed for longer than necessary because they aren’t getting the preventative healthcare services that they need. Sometimes, this is because of a lack of health insurance, and at other times it is as a result of life circumstances.
You can donate to charities that benefit childhood cancer research or even find a children’s hospital to volunteer at. The cure for childhood cancer can be found and if more people help a cure will be found even sooner. Children need to grow up healthy and safe as they are the future leaders of the next generation.