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How Hair Relaxers are Causing Cancer in Women

Did you know that hair relaxers could increase your risk of developing uterine cancer? It’s a scary thought but one that needs to be discussed.

Hair relaxers and hair straightening products are a personal choice for women, and it is up to you to decide whether or not to use them. There have been concerns about the potential health effects of some hair relaxers. The risks associated with using these products depend on several factors including the type of hair relaxer chemicals, the frequency and duration of use, and overall health.

Uterine Cancer: What You Should Know

Have you heard of uterine cancer? It is a type of cancer that women should be aware of as it can affect your uterus, where your baby grows during pregnancy.

Unfortunately, it can be hard to detect because the symptoms aren’t always obvious. That is why it is crucial to stay informed about the risks and pay attention to changes in your body.

The good news is that uterine cancer is usually treatable if caught early. However, if left untreated, it can spread to your body and may lead to a hysterectomy. So, keep yourself informed and seek medical attention if you notice any unusual symptoms.

Unlike Many Other Cancers, Uterine Cancer Rates Are Rising in the U.S.

uterine cancer risk

Recent studies have highlighted a concerning rise in the number of uterine cancer cases in the U.S. You must be well informed about the risks and symptoms of this disease to safeguard your health. Knowledge of uterine cancer can help you identify any unusual changes in your body, enabling you to take swift action and get the help you need. So, stay alert and proactive about your health to minimize risks and ensure your well-being.

Risks and Symptoms to Watch out for

As a woman, your health should always be a top priority. Uterine cancer is one of the many health concerns that you should keep a watchful eye on. Awareness of the risks and symptoms associated with uterine cancer can help you identify potential issues early on, allowing for prompt and effective treatment.

breast and ovarian cancer

  • Unusual vaginal bleeding: If you face unusual heavy bleeding during or between periods, sometimes even after menopause.
  • Pelvic pain or discomfort: This may feel like cramps or pressure in the pelvic area unrelated to menstruation.
  • Abnormal discharge: A watery or blood-tinged discharge from the vagina could be a symptom of uterine cancer.
  • Increased abdominal size: If your abdomen is getting larger without any explanation, it could be a symptom of uterine cancer.

Better be safe than sorry! Let’s talk about some possible causes of uterine cancer so that you can keep an eye out for them.

  • Obesity: Being overweight increases your risk of developing uterine cancer.
  • Age: The risk of uterine cancer increases as you get older, especially after menopause.
  • Family history: If other women in your family have had uterine cancer, you may also be at a higher risk of developing it.
  • Chemical Hair Relaxer Products: According to a recent study, women who reported frequent use of chemical hair relaxers are at increased risk to develop uterine cancer.

breast cancer hair products

Study Finds Possible Linkage Between Hair Relaxer Chemicals and Uterine Cancer Incidence

Let’s be real; who doesn’t crave sleek, straight hair every once in a while? Salons are cashing in on this desire, and women are guilty of splurging on pricey at-home hair straightening products. But here’s the thing: a recent study that tracked over 33,000 women from various backgrounds for over a decade has revealed some concerning findings.

Chemical Exposure and Hormone Sensitive Cancers

Women who used chemical hair relaxers were at twice the risk of developing uterine cancer than women who never used them. The researchers found that this risk was consistent with previous studies linking chemical relaxers to other hormone-sensitive, relatively rare cancers in women.

One thing worth noting is that the risk of uterine cancer from using hair relaxers is likely to be small. Other factors, such as obesity and genetics, play a significant role in determining a person’s overall risk of developing this type of cancer.

Regardless, it is crucial to be aware of the potential risks associated with these products, use them cautiously, or consider alternative hair styling methods.

According to the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, uterine cancer is common cancer affecting the female reproductive system. Unfortunately, in the past few decades, the number of women diagnosed with this type of cancer has increased in the United States.

According to recent research, the primary risk factors of uterine cancer are excess estrogen and an imbalance between estrogen and progesterone hormones. Experts suggest that certain chemicals commonly found in hair dyes and other hair relaxer products may disrupt these hormones, contributing to an elevated risk of uterine cancer.

Research Has Linked Hair Products With Breast and Ovarian Cancer

Previously researchers found that frequent use of hair products such as chemical hair straighteners or hair relaxers is not just limited to uterine cancer and may lead to other health disparities. Such as:

Breast Cancer

One of the most concerning factors is breast cancer. Some studies have suggested that exposure to endocrine disruptors, including those found in hair relaxers, may increase the risks of developing the disease.

Uterine Fibroids

The same endocrine disruptors, such as formaldehyde and other chemicals believed to heighten the likelihood of uterine cancer, may also play a role in the development of uterine fibroids. These non-cancerous tumors can grow in the uterus, leading to symptoms such as heavy menstrual bleeding, pain, and discomfort.

hormone related cancers national cancer institute

Although there are no exact causes of uterine fibroids known yet, research has suggested that exposure to endocrine disruptors, including certain chemicals found in hair relaxer products, may play a role in the development of fibroids.

Black Women at a Higher Risk to Develop Uterine Cancer: Why?

Another alarming aspect not discovered in previous studies was that Black women are at a higher risk of uterine cancer than White women because of the increased use of hair relaxer products. There is a stark contrast to older studies that did not report this. Let’s take a look.

If you’re a Black woman, you might be at a higher risk of developing aggressive subtypes of endometrial cancer, including Type II.

The researchers at the National Cancer Institute found that non-endometroid subtypes of uterine cancer are increasing more in Black women than in other groups.

Are Black Women Frequent Users of Permanent Hair Relaxers?

hair straightener use increased uterine cancer risk

Researchers found that about 60% of the women who used chemical straighteners last year were Black. The study didn’t show that the link between using hair relaxers and the risk of uterine cancer was different based on race. Still, since Black women tend to use these hair products more often and start using them at earlier ages than women of other races, the findings could be particularly relevant for them.

Reducing the Risk of Uterine Cancer: Steps Women Can Take

It is important to note that not all types of uterine cancer are increasing simultaneously. Some subtypes are becoming more common, while others are staying relatively stable. Researchers are still trying to understand the reasons for these differences and what they may mean for treatment and prevention. Below are mentioned a few suggestions and tips that you can follow to reduce your risk of hormone-sensitive cancers.

Straighten Hair Less Often

Limit the frequency of chemical hair relaxers to minimize health risks. Waiting until you feel that you must straighten again is a simple way to decrease the frequency of chemical treatment and promote the overall health of your hair and scalp.

Find a Trustworthy Salon

Consult a professional stylist for chemical treatments to minimize scalp irritation and exposure to dangerous fumes from hair relaxers. Look for a salon with good ventilation, and ask about the ingredients in the hair relaxers used by your stylist.

Increased risk ovarian cancer

Pick Products that Have Been Vetted

Choose hair relaxers that have been tested and proven to be safe, such as those that do not contain formaldehyde or have it at safe levels. Research brands and products carefully, and check for quality seals or certifications that attest to their safety.

Skip Chemical Hair Relaxers Altogether

Embrace your natural hair or try heat-styling solutions that do not use harsh chemicals, such as flat irons, curling irons, and de-frizz products. Avoid the risks associated with acids, bases, and formaldehyde that can harm your health. Use temporary hair styling products and techniques that do not penetrate your skin or lungs.

What to Do in Case You Feel Any Symptoms?

If you experience any symptoms related to uterine cancer or any other health concern, it’s essential to seek medical attention immediately.

If hair relaxers have caused you to become a victim of uterine cancer, you should consider contacting a law firm that specializes in personal injury cases.

Your lawyer can help you understand your legal options and determine whether you may be eligible for compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, and other damages. However, it is crucial to note that the legal processes can be complex and time-consuming, so carefully consider your options and consult a qualified attorney before taking action.

Contact Uptown Injury Law Firm

If hair relaxer chemicals have caused you or your loved one to be affected by uterine cancer, seek medical attention immediately. Symptoms to look out for include abnormal bleeding, pelvic pain, or unusual discharge. If you want to file a hair relaxer lawsuit, reach out to Uptown Injury Law.

Our experienced lawyers are here to guide you through the legal process, protect your rights and get you the deserved compensation. Check your hair relaxer lawsuit eligibility by taking a simple quiz here.

Our lawyers have a proven track record of successful personal injury, product liability, and medical malpractice cases. Furthermore, we work on a contingent fee basis, which means we don’t get paid unless you win. Contact us today at 917-540-8728 for a free case evaluation.

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Kyle Newman Founder and Senior Trial Lawyer at Uptown Injury Law New York's Best Personal Injury Medical Malpractice and Accident Law firm New York's Top Trial Lawyers
WRITTEN AND REVIEWED BY
Kyle Newman Founder and Senior Trial Lawyer at Uptown Injury Law New York's Best Personal Injury Medical Malpractice and Accident Law firm New York's Top Trial Lawyers

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