As Pinktober slowly draws to a close, it’s vital to keep in mind that breast cancer awareness is imperative all year round, and not just during this last month. To really help drill that point in home, Saint Thomas Hospital have provided us with five eye-opening statistics that teach us one very important fact; breast cancer in Malta is unfortunately more common than you think. An average of one in 10 women will contract it as some point in their lives, and to put that into perspective, here’s some other widely-regarded common things that also happen within that frequency:
1. It’s about as common as having curly hair.
Curly hair is present in 15% on average for Caucasians. Sadly, that means that your chances of meeting or knowing someone who has curly hair is only slightly more than them having breast cancer.
2. It’s about as common as being left handed.
It’s a known fact that approximately 10% of the world population is left handed. It’s shockingly sad to think that the same percentage can be applied for women who contract breast cancer. While the amount of left-handed people seems to be constantly on the rise—already reaching 12 and 15% in some regions—let’s hope that breast cancer doesn’t follow suit.
3. It’s about as common as having asthma.
The lifetime prevalence of asthma in Malta is 8 to 14%. Again, this is another relatively common trait that many people will have met someone who has to live with, and its frequency is pretty much the same as that of breast cancer.
4. It’s about as common as being lactose intolerant.
It seem like lactose intolerance is very much related to ethnic or racial groups. There may be no hard figures for Malta, but we can definitely follow geographical and ethnic trends to come up with very good guesses. In people of European descent, lactose intolerance prevalence is 5 to 15% (with those numbers getting a bit higher if you had to specifically look at the Mediterranean). Not being able to digest milkshake or ice cream is definitely not a walk in the park, but it gets worse when you remember it’s nearly as common as having breast cancer.
5. It’s about as common as having blue eyes.
While there is no specific data for Malta, most doctors and websites agree that worldwide, about 8% of people have blue eyes. For the Mediterranean region, that percentage goes up to between 10 – 15%, and that’s shockingly similar to the contraction rate of breast cancer. Think about that whenever you run into someone with beautiful blue eyes.
Mobile users can fill in the form via this link.