October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, but we want to create awareness year round with the Ask Me! campaign. The Ask Me! campaign seeks to increase the number of mammograms by 10% from last year in our two lowest counties: Shoshone and Benewah. Businesses in Shoshone and Benewah counties have been recruited to promote the Ask Me! campaign in their respective areas by wearing an apron or button that says “Ask Me!” and handing out information cards.
Panhandle Health District’s aim is to create awareness about screening for colorectal cancer. Colorectal cancer is the second leading cancer death, but if found early there are better chances for being cured.
The risk for colorectal cancer increases with age and is most commonly found in people age 50 and over. Aside from age, risk for this cancer is increased if the individual or a close relative has had colorectal polyps or cancer.
Colorectal cancer can start with no symptoms so someone may have this cancer or polyps, which may lead to cancer. However, some do have symptoms: blood in the stool; pain, aches, or cramps in the stomach that happen often; unexplained weight loss; and/or a change in bowel habits. The message – talk to the doctor with any concerns and GET SCREENED!
Skin cancer is the most common cancer diagnosed in the United States and sunburns significantly raise the risk for developing skin cancer. That is why we promote protection! Steps to help decrease the risk for skin cancer:
- Do not burn.
- Avoid tanning beds and sun tanning.
- Use sunscreen.
- Cover up with a wide-brimmed hat and protective clothing, such as long-sleeved shirts, pants, and sunglasses.
- Seek shade when the sun’s UV rays are most intense (between 10:00 am and 4:00 pm).
- Pay attention to the UV index.
No Sun For Baby is a program currently being promoted by Kootenai Health and Bonner
General to parents of newborn babies. This program promotes the protection from the sun for babies by limiting their exposure to the sun. Protect babies by dressing them in protective clothing. After 6 months of age, apply sunscreen to babies’ skin. Sunscreen is not recommended for babies under 6 months of age due to the chemicals that may be harsh for an infant’s sensitive skin; and sunscreen can make it difficult for babies to cool by perspiration.
Click here for an Audio Message on Skin Cancer.