Medical science may have conquered diseases such as smallpox and polio, but some of the deadliest diseases are still out there. In fact, no cure at all exists for some of the worst diseases humanity faces.
However, awareness of the deadliest diseases is essential for early diagnosis and treatment.
Even better, there are steps you can take to reduce your risk factors.
So, what are some of the deadliest diseases in the world? What are their symptoms and risk factors, and what can you do to prevent them?
What Exactly Is a Disease?
You may have a basic understanding of the fact that a disease is a condition that prevents your body from functioning the way it usually would.
Not all diseases are the same, though. In fact, they can be classified in many different ways. Categories of diseases include thyroid, nerve, digestive, autoimmune, cancer, bacterial, and heart diseases.
And diseases may be noncommunicable or communicable. Communicable diseases can be spread by virus, bacteria, parasites, or fungi.
On the other hand, non-communicable diseases are not passed from one individual to another. And some illnesses are chronic, meaning that they are continuously present. Such conditions are not treatable, but they are controllable.
In this Seven of the Deadliest Diseases: Symptoms and Prevention guide, we will learn about the diseases that are fatal to us.
What Are Some of the Deadliest Diseases in Our World?
Here are some of the deadliest diseases that are afflicting us. If you are currently experiencing any of these conditions or diseases, we recommend that you contact your doctor as soon as possible. Your doctor will help you determine the most effective treatment and preventive measures for you.
1.Diabetes mellitus: symptoms and prevention
Diabetes is an umbrella term for a number of diseases that affect the production and use of insulin. The most common types of diabetes include Type 1 Diabetes and Type 2 Diabetes.
Your pancreas is unable to synthesize insulin in Type 1 Diabetes. Unfortunately, the cause of Type 1 Diabetes is not precisely known.
On the other hand, in Type 2 Diabetes, your pancreas is unable to synthesize sufficient insulin, or your body is not able to effectively use the insulin. Many factors can lead to Type 2 Diabetes, such as being overweight, lack of physical activity, and an unhealthy diet.
Contact your doctor as soon as possible if you think that you have diabetes for a definite diagnosis.
Common symptoms of diabetes mellitus include unexplained weight loss, extreme hunger, dry skin, excessive thirst, frequent urination, sudden vision changes, and extreme tiredness.
Some of the risk factors for diabetes include physical inactivity, poor diet, older age, and high blood pressure.
While this disease is not always preventable, you can control the severity of symptoms by eating a healthy diet and engaging in some form of exercise daily. What’s more, incorporating more fiber into your diet can help regulate your blood sugar.
2.Coronary artery disease: symptoms and prevention
Coronary artery disease (CAD) is the world’s deadliest disease. It happens when the blood vessels that lead to the heart become blocked or narrowed. If left untreated, CAD can result in irregular heartbeat, heart failure, and chest pain.
Symptoms of coronary artery disease include tightness, heaviness, chest pain, and burning.
Some of the risk factors for this disease include high cholesterol, diabetes, smoking, high blood pressure, and being overweight.
If you have one of the above-mentioned risk factors, contact your health care provider as soon as possible. However, the good news is that you can prevent CAD by taking good care of your heart and by taking medications.
In addition, you can take some steps to reduce your risk, such as quitting smoking, exercising daily, eating a healthy diet, and drinking moderately.
3.Alzheimer’s disease: symptoms and prevention
Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive disorder that impairs your memory and mental functions, such as reasoning and thinking.
It is a kind of dementia. As a matter of fact, 60 percent to 80 percent of dementia cases are Alzheimer’s. This debilitating disease begins by causing difficulty remembering information and mild memory issues.
However, as it progresses, you experience more cognitive difficulties and more significant memory loss. In fact, according to one study, in the United States, the number of deaths due to this disease may be higher than reported.
Symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease include loss of memory and difficulty remembering conversations.
Some of the risk factors for this disease include unhealthy lifestyle, heredity, family history, age, head injury, current cognitive impairment, and having poor interaction with others for an extended period of time.
Unfortunately, at present, there is no way to prevent this disease. Also, scientists have not yet figured out why some individuals develop Alzheimer’s disease, and others don’t. However, efforts are being made to find preventive techniques.
Fortunately, you can help decrease your risk of this age-related disease by eating a heart-healthy diet. Good choices for this diet include lean fish, nuts, vegetables, olive oil, and fruits, to name a few.
4. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease: symptoms and prevention
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a lung disease characterized by difficulty breathing. The two forms of COPD include emphysema and chronic bronchitis. Back in 2004, approximately 64 million individuals worldwide were suffering from this condition.
Early signs and symptoms of COPD include too much production of mucus, persistent cough, tiredness, shortness of breath, wheezing, and chest tightness.
Some of the risk factors for this lung disease include family history, lung irritants (chemical fumes), secondhand smoke, and smoking.
While there is no treatment for COPD, its progression can be halted with medication. Fortunately, you can prevent this disease by quitting smoking and by avoiding lung irritants and secondhand smoke.
Also, contact your doctor as soon as possible if you experience any symptoms of COPD.
5. Stroke: symptoms and prevention
A stroke occurs when the blood flow to a part of your brain is stopped. The cells in your brain are deprived of oxygen and start to die.
You experience difficulty seeing and walking and feel sudden numbness during a stroke. Also, it is essential to note that an untreated stroke can result in long-term disability.
You may not be aware, but strokes are the primary cause of long-term disabilities. However, you are less likely to have disabilities if you get treatment within three hours of suffering from a stroke. Some of the warning signs and symptoms of stroke include sudden confusion, numbness, headache, difficulty walking, and trouble seeing.
Some of the risk factors for stroke include smoking, being female, being African-American, family history of stroke, and high blood pressure.
The good news is that you can prevent some of these risk factors by taking medication and making lifestyle changes. In other words, good health habits can reduce your risk of stroke. Stroke can be prevented by regulating high blood pressure with surgery or medications. You should exercise daily and eat a diet that is low in sodium.
Apart from this, you should quit smoking and drink moderately, because these activities can raise your stroke risk.
6. Lower respiratory infections: symptoms and prevention
A lower respiratory infection is an infection that affects your airways and lungs. It can be due to tuberculosis, bronchitis, pneumonia, flu, or influenza. Generally, viruses and bacteria are responsible for causing lower respiratory infections.
Some of the main symptoms of lower respiratory infections include wheezing, breathlessness, coughing, and a tight feeling in the chest. If left untreated, lower respiratory infections can cause death and breathing failure.
Risk factors for this disease include a weak immune system, HIV, asthma, smoking, exposure to lung irritants, and poor quality of air.
To reduce your chances of getting lower respiratory infections, you should get the flu shot each year. People at high risk of pneumonia can also get a vaccine. It’s also important to note that correct handwashing practices can decrease the risk of respiratory infections by 16 percent. So, always wash your hands with water and soap to keep bacteria at bay.
And if you suffer from a respiratory infection, stay at your home until you feel better. After all, rest is an integral part of recovering from any ailment.
7. Respiratory cancer: symptoms and prevention
Shockingly, approximately four million people die from respiratory cancer every year. Respiratory cancers are cancers of the bronchus, lungs, larynx, and trachea. Some of the causes of respiratory cancers include environmental toxins, secondhand smoke, and smoking. However, household pollution, such as mold and fuels, can also lead to respiratory cancers.
Respiratory cancers can affect anyone. However, if you have a history of tobacco use or smoking, you are more likely to be affected by them. In addition, some of the other risk factors for respiratory cancers include exposure to environmental factors and family history.
The most common symptoms of lung cancer include loss of appetite, coughing up blood, feeling weak or tired, hoarseness, and wheezing.
However, the good news is that early diagnosis can decrease the symptoms of these cancers and improve your outlook.
Living a Healthy Lifestyle Is the Key to Good Health
Fortunately, many of the deadliest diseases described in this list are treatable (but not necessarily curable) and even preventable. You should know that living a healthy lifestyle can help reduce your risk of these deadliest diseases.
Therefore, make sure you exercise daily, eat a nutritious and well-balanced diet, and drink moderately. Even better, quit smoking.
On top of that, properly washing your hands can help decrease or prevent your risk of viral and bacterial infections.
Do you suffer from any of the aforementioned deadliest diseases? What measures are you taking to handle them? Let us know in the comment section.