Cervical Cancer – Yun A

I chose this issue because I became interested when one of my friends told me about this disease, complaining that the vaccine hurt so much. I was surprised that there was a vaccine for cancer, and was curious about it. As I researched, this affected me a lot. I¬†became more aware of the possibilities of my future and was surprised to find out that my age was the right age to get a vaccine. It connects to my previous learning about smoking(it was one of the acts that could highly risk getting cervical cancer), and the reproduction unit, learning more about the uterus. This issue is relevant to me because all females contain the danger of getting cervical cancer, and thus should always be aware of their health status. This is important because a lot of people still aren’t well aware of the cause and effects of cervical cancer and didn’t get a vaccine when it was most effective for you. This affects teenagers because by learning about what causes cervical cancer and the danger of it, teenagers can be more aware of the things they do and think once more. Also, though there isn’t a high chance of teenagers getting this cancer(sometimes it takes a very long time to actually show symptoms), if it does, then it will critically affect the teenager’s wellness in all 4 parts.

The basic form of the uterus, the location of the cervix and where the cancer usually is placed

I learned that cervical cancer has a cause clearly proved, different from other cancers, and have a vaccine that can prevent. Also, I was unaware that so many people were unaware of the disease and didn’t do anything much sooner that could’ve changed their lives. It expanded my learning by teaching me some actions I should consider more carefully before doing it, such as smoking and avoid¬†exposure to HPV. My opinion about this issue is that although it has a clear cause and a marvelous vaccine that will mostly decrease the risk of getting this cancer, people need to be more alert, informed, and aware of cervical cancer. Only 40% of American woman knew what HPV Infection was, and just about half of them knew that it was the cause of cervical cancer. I think that there should be something to change this ignorance. It was surprising at how much death it caused(4th most death for female patients), and also unexpected. Throughout the research, my thinking changed; people should be more specifically informed of this cervical cancer, and not just vaguely think that it’s quite dangerous. Maybe we could add a lesson for specific diseases in wellness class. One misunderstanding about this topic is that the vaccine may heal everything caused by HPV, but it is not true. It only prevents ‘some’ strains caused by HPV. A problem is that in some low-income or developing countries, the number one cause of people dying is because of cervical cancer. The solution to this is to make the vaccine a requirement so everyone could prevent this from happening. This influenced my thinking about wellness because now I know how cervical cancer is caused, and how it harms a person mentally(mental fog), emotionally(depression), physically(cervix damaged/blood and pain), and socially(social relationships with people will be restricted when you get cancer)

Sleep Deprivation – Alyssa

I chose this issue because it is important for young adults to be aware of how important sleep is to your body and how this issue can affect all aspects of wellness, from your social skills to your mental health. It affects you because it can cause problems at school, your behavior and your relationships with friends and family. I can connect to this issue because whenever I don’t get more than 5 hours of sleep a night, I’ll start losing my focus in class and miss out on what the teacher is teaching. I also tend to be moodier and have less patience when I’m around people, which also causes stress and makes me unproductive throughout the day. This matter affects teenagers because it impairs their attention, alertness, problem solving skills and reasoning overtime. It also causes you to forget whatever you learned or experienced that day. The lack of sleep also makes you forgetful. Brain events called sharp wave ripples make our memory stronger, and occurs mostly during the deepest levels of sleep. Without sleep, there would be limited time for the wave ripples to improve our memory.

Sleep deprivation also affects teenagers because it changes their appearance. The lack of sleep gives people sallow (unhealthy yellow, pale brown) skin, puffy eyes and dark circles under eyes. The lack of sleep also releases too much of the stress hormone ‘cortisol’, which breaks down the collagen in your skin and makes it wrinkly. Collagen is an important protein in your body that holds it together. The absence of rest also causes your body to release too little growth hormones, which usually get released during sleep- which causes delays in growth, the increase of muscle mass, and the strengthening of bones.

I learnt that sleep deprivation has very serious consequences and it is important to know about this topic so we can avoid various diseases and problems in education and relationships with others. Some solutions we can use to increase the amount of sleep we get is doing schoolwork as soon as you get back home- that way, you won’t procrastinate and start your mound of homework instead of sleeping. Taking advantage of the extra sleeping time on the weekends is also a good way to increase the amount of sleep you get, and staying away from electronics and caffeine could also help you sleep better. Starting an improved sleep schedule will help you get used to sleeping more every day.

This influences my thinking in wellness because now I know that even though the lack of sleep may look like it only affects your appearance, it affects you mentally and physically too.

This image shows the effect of sleep deprivation on the face. As seen on the picture on the right, the girl looks slightly happier when she has a sufficient amount of sleep every night than when she has less than 3 hours of sleep every night, and also looks more awake with a brighter face.