Myeloma or multiple myeloma is a cancer that starts in plasma cells. Plasma cells are one type of white blood cell that make antibodies to help fight infections. These cells are mostly found in the bone marrow but are also present in some other tissues and organs. Myeloma can cause anemia, fatigue, upset the balance of minerals in the body, and lead to bone and kidney damage. But there are ways to reduce the risk of this occurring. Here are some ways
Maintain a Healthy Body Weight
There is research that shows that being overweight or obese increases the risk of multiple myeloma. Eating well and being physically active can help maintain a healthy body weight.
Beware of Harmful Substances at Work
People that undertake farmwork are exposed to a higher risk of developing multiple myeloma. This may be because they work with toxic chemicals like pesticides. Similarly, other occupations may also involve exposure to harmful substances. Always check if the substances in your workplace can cause cancer and avoid or limit your exposure to these substances. Follow all safety rules when you work around hazardous chemicals. Always wear protective clothing and use safety equipment to ensure that you do not get exposed to harmful materials. As far as possible, reduce the time spent around harmful chemicals.
Stay Protected from Viral Infections
Several viral infections like hepatitis B and C and HIV may increase the risk of multiple myeloma. Get vaccinated against the hepatitis B virus. Practice safe sex by always using condoms and avoid blood-to-blood contact during sex. Don’t share needles or other drug-related equipment. Participate in a needle exchange program when using IV drugs. If there’s the likelihood of coming into contact with someone else’s blood, always wear latex gloves. When getting a tattoo, body piercing, or acupuncture, ensure that the needles are new, clean, and sterile. They should not be used or homemade.
Talk to a doctor and find out if you’re at a higher than average risk for multiple myeloma. If you are, then visit your doctor often to check for multiple myeloma. Your doctor will recommend which tests are to be performed and how often. Follow their recommendations to the letter.