Health Blogs

Why are Older people more prone to Cancer in general?

Cancer may occur at any age, it is much more common in older people. This doesn’t mean that younger people don’t develop cancer. Limiting alcohol use, favouring a vegetable-rich diet, weight control, quitting smoking, and physical activity may all be recommended to the elderly. A healthy lifestyle improves overall health comprehensively, which helps older people maintain better well-being. Good general condition and muscle strength, independence, as well as controlled diabetes and blood pressure can decisively work in favour of active treatment.

As people get older, the risk of developing cancer increases. This fact might be surprising as the press often reports on childhood cancer or people in their 20s, 30s or 40s who have developed the disease. This can be misleading and make it seem that these are the age groups most likely to be affected.

Why does cancer risk increase as we get older?

Over time, the cells in our body can become damaged. As we age, this damage builds up and could result in cancer.

Lifestyle issues – This damage could be because of things like cigarette smoke, drinking alcohol and how active we are. But the damage could also happen by chance, and some people are born with damage to their genes that can make them more likely to develop cancer.

Uncontrolled cellular growth – Once cells are damaged, they may start to grow and multiply more than usual, forming a growth called a tumour. This is the start of cancer.

Metabolic pathways trigged with age – Patients can experience changes in their hormones due to changes in their metabolic pathways with age. These changes can cause aberrations and changes in the processes causing cancer or any tumour growth

Exposure to carcinogenic substances and UV rays – Extensive exposure to sunlight, UV rays and harmful chemicals can cause cancer. These chemicals may be involved in your work or could be near your home. It is essential that you are aware of the harmful effects of the substances and consult a specialist if you feel any abnormality in your body. With age the propensity of the body to handle the exposure decreases, thereby causing cancer.