Today is World Brain Tumour Day. Do you know all about the deadly brain tumour?
The human body is built in a way that tiny building blocks known as body cells make up our organs and tissues. These cells further divide themselves in a controlled way to make new cells that enable the body to grow, heal and repair. The abnormal growth of these cells forms a lump, that’s what we call tumour.
Tumours can grow and behave in different manners. They may be malignant that means cancerous or benign that is non-cancerous. Malignant brain tumours can easily spread in other parts of the brain and to the spinal cord from their point of origin. Whereas, benign brain tumour usually doesn’t spread in brain but it may press the nearby tissues causing problems.
Brain tumour can be classified in two broad categories each having different grades. The one that arises within brain tissue is called primary brain tumour. When cancer cells spread from where the cancer first started to other parts of the brain, it is called as secondary brain tumour.
Primary brain tumour can be further categorised on the basis of the tissue in which it originates. The tumour that begins in glial tissue is the most common primary brain tumour known as gliomas. It may be of several types:
Astrocytomas: It may grow anywhere in the brain and spinal cord. In adults, it generally originates in cerebrum. However, in children it occurs in brain stem, cerebrum or cerebellum.
Oligodendrogliomas: It generally arises in cerebrum and grows slowly. It doesn’t generally spread in surrounding areas of brain tissue.
Ependymomas: It usually develops in the lining of the ventricles. This tumour is most common in childhood and adolescence but can develop in any age.
There are few brain tumours other than those which do not develop in glial tissue.
Meningiomas: It is usually benign. It grows very slowly and the brain gets adjusted to its presence gradually. It occurs usually in females between thirty to fifty years of age. Without showing any symptoms, it may grow quite large.
Schwannomas: It occurs most often in adults. These tumours affect women twice as often as men.
Craniopharyngiomas: It develops in pituitary gland. These tumours occur most often in children and adolescents.
Germ cell tumour: It originates from developing sex cells or germ cells.
Pineal region tumour: It occurs in or around the pineal gland - a tiny organ near the centre of the brain. This area is very difficult to reach. So, most often it can’t be removed. This tumour can be slow or fast growing.
Secondary brain tumours are completely different from primary brain tumours. They have the same name as the original cancer like if lung cancer spreads to the brain, it is called as metastatic lung cancer. Metastasis is the spread of cancer within the body. The cells in secondary tumour resemble to abnormal cells of the organ in which the cancer originated. The most common cancers that can spread to the brain are breast cancer, colon cancer, kidney cancer, lung cancer and melanoma.
Symptoms of brain tumour:
Severe headaches and their changing patterns, more frequent and more severe headaches.
Nausea and vomiting.
Motor seizures, unintentional movements such as twitching, changes in performance of daily activities and walking patterns.
Growth of hands and feet in adults.
Fatigue, sluggishness and loss of initiative.
Muscle weakness, soreness and paralysis.
Memory difficulties, confusion, personality or behaviour changes.
Sensory changes in vision, smelling, hearing or emotional state etc.
Loss of control of body functions, partial or total loss of consciousness.
Altered menstrual periods or secretion of breast milk in women.
Preventive and healing natural remedies:
Adequate sleep is the basic requirement for a healthy brain. A good sleep flushes out the toxins through a glymphatic system. These toxins naturally accumulate during the day. Lack of sleep distracts the natural process of glymphatic system affecting cognitive function.
Live a healthy lifestyle with meditation, yoga and deep breathing exercises. These stress reducing practices can help lessen inflammation in the brain. Reduce stress and stay happy.
Herbs and vegetables are becoming progressively more popular to combat brain tumour. Turmeric, ginger, oregano, basil, thyme, green tea and green leafy vegetables contain cancer fighting phytonutrients. Consume them daily along with ketogenic diet containing adequate amount of proteins, healthy fats and low carbohydrates that trigger ketone production. A ketogenic diet may reduce oxidative stress and inflammation in the brain and obstructs the supply of nutrients to tumour. Calorie restriction with diet control and fasting may also reduce inflammation, prevent cancer metastasis, constrain cancer cells from multiplying and produce ketones to fuel neurons.
Reduce your exposure to radiation from wireless devices. Use landline phones more instead of cell phones. Text instead of talking on mobile phone whenever it can serve the purpose. Use the speaker phone. Don’t talk when signals are poor. Never sleep with your mobile phone in your bedroom especially keeping it near your head. Power off your wireless device when not in use. Besides these healthy lifestyle habits, ‘Hyper Basic Oxygen Therapy’ received at a young age can reduce the risk of brain tumour and also improve cognitive function of survivors of brain tumour.
Save the most important organ of your body. It controls the ability to speak, think, learn, move and control your emotions. A healthy lifestyle is the key to prevent brain tumour. Know your risk factors like age, exposure to radiation, a family history of brain tumour and currently having cancer in another part of your body from where it could metastasize to your brain. If you notice any symptom, seek medical hlep at the earliest. Live healthy and longer!