Does Living in a Rural Area Put You at Higher Risk for Cancer?

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Research suggests that cancer risks can be calculated by geography.

quitting alcohol

I am the kind of person that loves the fast pace of city living, but ultimately sees the value of living in a more rural area, especially when raising kids. Suburbs are a happy medium, because they offer the peace, quiet, and most of all, space, that city dwellings can’t compete with.

A new report from the Centers for Disease Control however suggests that living in rural areas could increase your risk of dying of certain kinds of cancer.

The data, which was compiled between 2006 and 2015 looked at cancer deaths overall and found that the numbers are both higher, and falling at a much slower pace in rural areas of the country. For every 100,000 people who live in the country, there are 180 deaths, compared to 158 in urban areas. Even though cancer rates in rural areas are slightly better than their urban counterparts, actual deaths from cancer are higher, especially regarding lung, colorectal, cervical, and prostate cancers.

READ MORE: Can Alcohol Increase Your Risk of Breast Cancer?

Scientists think smoking may be a factor in these findings, since people are more likely to smoke in rural areas, and smoking can have a lot of bad side effects that can lead to cancer.

People in rural areas are also more likely to be obese, and have less access to quality medical care and preventative services.

The moral of the story is, if you choose to live in a rural area of the country, don’t let your medical care suffer for it. Get your checkups on time, and don’t be afraid to travel for your health if need be. At the end of the day, we should all live where we feel at home, but that doesn’t mean we don’t deserve quality medical treatment.

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Published by karenmsutton

HSS Orthopaedic surgeon in sports medicine | Mother of 4 amazing children | Team physician for USA Women's Lacrosse | ACL injury expert

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