What Is Cancer?

     Little Kids Get cancer too

Our bodies are made up of tiny cells.

They all have different jobs to do and they are busy dividing (splitting into two), making more new cells to do their job. Usually new cells are made as they are needed in each part of the body. Inside each cell are chemicals that give the signals for making new cells or stop making new cells.

Cancer forms when…

The cells get their massages mixed up so that cells are made which are not normal cells, or the cells don’t get a message to stop making new cells, so too many cells are made. That is when a tumor forms. Some tumors are benign (say bee-nine). Too many new cells are made but they don’t spread anywhere else. The other kind of tumor is a malignant (say mal-ig-nant), and this is the cancer that grows too much in one area and can spread to other areas of the body.

What causes cancer?

Anyone can get cancer, but some things may make it more likely to happen (called ‘risk factors’).

  • Smoking may lead to lung cancer.
  • Spending too much time in the sun can lead to kin cancer.
  • Carcinogens (say car-sin-o-jens) – cancer-causing agents
  • A history of cancer in the family can mean that others are at higher risk (they are more likely to get cancer).
  • People whose bodies do not have a strong immune system (the parts of the body that get rid of germs and body cells that are not normal) are more at risk of getting cancer.

However, often people who have many of these risk factors don’t get cancer, while others who have none of these risk factors do.

Cancer can happen to anyone, and it’s not anyone’s fault if it does.


Treating Cancer

Most cancers can be treated and often the person can get completely better, but sometimes treatment can only make someone better for a short time. Treatments often make people feel very sick for a while. What treatment is used depends on the type of cancer and where it is.

Surgery or having an operation to take out of the tumor can be used with some cancers.

Radiotherapy is when high energy x-rays are aimed at the tumor to kill the cancer cells.

Chemotherapy (say kee-mo-therapy) is when drugs are used to destroy the cancer cells.

These drugs may also attack other healthy cells like he cells that make hair, and this is why people on this treatment often lose their hair – but it grows back again after the treatment stops.

Some of these treatments are used at the same time as the treatments we talked about before.

Meditation      Diets      Counseling      Exercise



STAY FIT: Get 8 hours of sleep each night. Do some form of exercise everyday: walk, run, stretch, play

STAY HEALTHY: Practice good hygiene by keeping yourself clean and germ free.

STAY ENERGISED: Eat nutritious meals and snacks during the day. Include foods from these groups: dairy, grains, protein, vegetables and fruits.

STAY SAFE: Wear proper gear when playing sports, riding and seat belts when riding in a car. Always obey safety rules.

STAY HAPPY: Make good choices everyday for a happy healthy YOU!

If someone you know has cancer then you can be helpful by understanding that he or she is still the same person. Take time to be with that person and understand that he or she will not want to talk about cancer all the time. Have fun together…

If the person is a close member of your family it can be very hard to deal with. Talk to your trusted adults about how you are feeling.

If you see someone who is in a wheelchair or has lost a limb or an eye or maybe has visible bump on their head or any other part of their body or has no hair, please do not stare, point or laugh because this will make them feel very sad.