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Top 10 Causes of Death in the U.S

Almost 75% of deaths in the United States are attributed to just 10 causes, and a top 3 causes accounting more than 50% of deaths. A total of 2,626,418 deaths were registered in 2014, with the same causes as in 2013. Hopefully, all of the terrifying data will help develop prevention programs.

Here’s the unchanging (so far) list of the 10 leading
causes of deaths in the US :

10. Heart disease

causes-death-us-0Heart disease has topped the list for years now, and still remains the first leading cause of deaths for both men and women. This disease can include many conditions that result in heart attack or stroke.

The best prevention from heart disease are proper protection and awareness of the symptoms and warning signs (chest pain, nausea, breathlessness, cold sweats and others) of a heart attack.

Protection means following a healthy lifestyle and dietary modifications that ensures lowering blood pressure and cholesterol, as well as avoiding smoking and stress.

9. Cancer

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Cancer can affect any one of any age, any time. It is a collection of diseases (abnormal cells) which mainly spread and grow out of control, interfering with essential systems which result in death.

Although any person can develop cancer, the risk of cancer increases with age and depends on every individual’s genetic factors or differences in exposure to carcinogens (like from smoking).

Lung cancer lies behind more deaths than any other type of cancer in both men and women. But, is it possible to prevent cancer ? Well, only a considerable proportion of cancers can be preventable, along with the ones caused by smoking and excessive use of alcohol.

According to World Cancer Research Fund, up to 1/3 of cancer cases in the US are associated to overweight, obesity, sedentary or poor nutrition. These all can be prevented.

8. Chronic lower respiratory disease

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Chronic lower respiratory disease, abbreviated CLRD, is a group of lung diseases causing blockage of airflow and breathing issues, such as asthma, emphysema and bronchitis.

The primary common disease is chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), with major warning signs and symptoms including breathlessness, persistent coughing with phlegm and frequent chest infections.

In fact, 80% of COPD deaths are attributed to smoking, so in order to prevent this disease, one must avoid second-hand smoke and quit smoking, as well as avoiding air pollution, chemical fumes and dust.

7. Accidents (unintentional injuries)

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Accidents are another leading cause of deaths, especially for people between 1 to 44 years old. Mainly due to speeding and highway crashes, which result both in economic loss and social harm.

Any possible prevention measures? Accidents are unintentional by nature, but still there are several ways to lower the risk of unintentional death and injury, including seat-belt use and awareness of the dangers of excessive speed or driving while intoxicated.

Actually, between 1975 and 2008, seat belts were estimated to have saved 255,000 American lives.

6. Stroke (cerebrovascular diseases)

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Cerebrovascular diseases are a result of issues with blood vessels that supply the brain. The most common types are stroke, TIA (transient ischemic attack), subarachnoid hemorrhage and vascular dementia. The risk of stroke increases with age and over 795,000 people in the US have a stroke every year.

The main risk factors for stroke are high blood pressure, high cholesterol and smoking, as well as unhealthy lifestyle choices and many other medical conditions. Every second matters during a stroke, and fast treatment can reduce brain damage caused by stroke.

Signs of stroke are all sudden and include, numbness or weakness on one side of the body, confusion, sight troubles, dizziness or loss of balance and severe headache. At the appearance of any of these symptoms, you are urged to call 9-1-1 immediately.

5. Alzheimer’s disease

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All diseases and conditions characterized by a decline in memory or other cognitive abilities, are included in the term Dementia. Alzheimer’s is just one type of dementia (accounting 60-80% of its cases).

People with Alzheimer’s suffer from damage and death of neurons which eventually impair the ability to carry out basic bodily functions such as swallowing and walking. At final stages, patients are bed-bound with 24 hours care.

A woman’s estimated lifetime risk of developing Alzheimer’s at age 65 is 1 in 6, while 1 in 11 for a man. And according to Alzheimer’s Association, a new person develops the disease, every 67 seconds. Prevention ?

Actually, as the cause of Alzheimer‘s is still unknown, there is no way to prevent it. However, there are things that may only help to delay dementia’s onset, such as reducing risk of cardiovascular disease and staying mentally active.

4. Diabetes (diabetes mellitus)

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Diabetes mellitus is when the body loses ability to properly control blood glucose, leading to hyperglycemia which can eventually damage the body’s tissues, including eyes tissues, blood vessels and verves. Diabetes can cause heart disease, kidney failure, blindness and amputation of lower extremities or limbs.

Any one who thinks might have diabetes must a visit a physician, because they may have some or none of the warning signs, such as frequent urination, extreme thirst or/and hunger, weight loss, sudden visions changes, very dry skin and more infections than usual.Any prevention?

There is no known way to prevent type 1 diabetes, research is still in progress. But there are many ways to lower the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, including regular physical activity and maintaining a healthy body weight.

3. Influenza and pneumonia

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Influenza, or flu, is a contagious viral infection and a severe illness in winter. There are different strains of three influenza virus families : A, B and C, which explains why a person can have the flu more than once.

Influenza can be worsen by pneumonia, that causes lungs inflammation, preventing oxygen from reaching the bloodstream, and death. Together, pneumonia and influenza are the leading causes of around 56,979 deaths each year.

Pneumonia and influenza can be prevented, by following some methods, such as vaccinations, frequent hand washing, quit smoking and keeping a healthy lifestyle.

2. Kidney disease (nephritis, nephrotic syndrome and nephrosis)

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Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is when the kidneys are corrupted and can no longer filter blood. The risks of developing CKD increase with age, mostly after 50 years and is most common among people older than 70 years.

An estimated 26 million Americans have CKD, with around 47,112 deaths every year. Can it be prevented ? In order to reduce the risk of CKD, one must avoid excessive alcohol intake, maintain a healthy weight, stop smoking and manage medical conditions with the help of a doctor.

1. Suicide (intentional self-harm)

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Suicide is the US 10th leading cause of death accounting around 41,149 deaths each year. Risk factors of suicide vary with age, gender and ethnicity, and may include, mental disorders, substance abuse, family history of suicide or violence, and incarceration.

However, many people with these factors are not suicidal, while others who are suicidal may not have any of these risk factors. You must ask for help as soon as possible, at any small notice of any unusual negative behavior, either in yourself or a friend.

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