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Protecting Your Lungs

Protecting your lungs is one of the best ways to stay healthy and reduce your risk of lung cancer. 

Key Points

  • Cigarette smoking is the number one lung cancer risk factor.
  • Breathing in dangerous chemicals can cause lung cancer.
  • The more chemicals you breathe in, the higher your lung cancer risk.
  • Take steps to protect your lungs from lung cancer all of the time.

Take Action

Learn more about how to protect yourself from each lung cancer risk factor. Tell your doctor if you have a family history of lung cancer or if you have been exposed to any of these lung cancer risk factors.


Smoking causes lung cancer, COPD and many other illnesses. To protect you lungs:

Should You Be Screened for Lung Cancer?

Find out if you are eligible for lung cancer screening.

  • Don't start smoking
  • Quit smoking if you smoke
  • Avoid secondhand smoke

Learn more about how to stop smoking or how help a loved one quit.


Test your home for radon. You can do this with inexpensive, easy-to-use test kits sold at hardware stores. 

Industrial Compounds

If you are exposed to dust and fumes at work, ask your health and safety advisor how you are being protected.


Help fight pollution. Work with others in your community to clean up the air you and your family breathe. 

Learn more about what causes lung cancer »

    Approved by Scientific and Medical Editorial Review Panel. Last reviewed November 3, 2016.

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