Of all the known hazards posed by the sun, skin cancer is certainly the most worrisome. With skin cancer rates on the rise in many parts of the world, it's important to be aware of the dangers Skin Care for Sun Safety & Skin Cancer Prevention of sun exposure and learn how best to protect your skin and your health. If you're wondering how can you practice sun safety and looking for tips for skin cancer prevention, keep reading.
What is skin cancer?
Skin cancer occurs when the cells in the skin start to grow out of control, forming a malignant tumor. The two most common types of skin cancer are basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma, both of which are highly treatable if caught early. However, the most deadly form of skin cancer is melanoma, which can spread quickly to other parts of the body if left untreated. These are some of the reasons why sun safety and skin cancer prevention are so important.
How does the sun cause skin cancer?
The sun emits ultraviolet (UV) radiation, which damages the DNA in skin cells. Over time, this damage can accumulate and cause mutations in the DNA, leading to skin cancer. UV radiation can also weaken the immune system, making it harder for the body to fight off cancer cells.
Who is at risk of developing for skin cancer?
Anyone can develop skin cancer, but some people are at higher risk than others.
Some risk factors of developing skin cancer include:
Fair skin, blonde or red hair, and blue or green eyes
History of sunburns, especially during childhood
Family history of skin cancer
Weakened immune system due to illness or medication
Exposure to tanning beds or other sources of UV radiation
Living at high altitudes or in areas with strong sunlight
Skin cancer prevention
How can you protect yourself from skin cancer?
The best way to protect yourself from skin cancer is to limit your exposure to the sun's UV radiation.
Here are some ways to practice sun safety and keep UV radiation at bay:
Seek shade: When possible, stay in the shade, especially during the sun's peak hours (10 a.m. to 4 p.m.).
Cover up: Wear protective clothing, such as long-sleeved shirts and pants, as well as a wide-brimmed hats and sunglasses.
Use sunscreen: Apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 to all exposed skin, and reapply every two hours (or more often if you're swimming or sweating).
Avoid tanning beds: Tanning beds emit UV radiation that can increase your risk of skin cancer.
Get regular skin checks: Have a dermatologist examine your skin annually or more often if you have a history of skin cancer.
How does sunscreen work?
Sunscreen protects the skin from sun damage by absorbing or reflecting the sun's UV radiation before it can penetrate the skin. Most sunscreens contain organic and/or inorganic compounds that act as filters to block UV rays. At Organic Glow Medical Aesthetics in Kelowna, we offer AlumierMD mineral sunscreen, which reflects the sun’s rays to keep the skin protected.
Make sure you're applying your sunscreen properly and re-applying regularly!
What should you look for in a sunscreen?
When choosing a sunscreen, look for one that is broad-spectrum (meaning it protects against both UVA and UVB rays) and has an SPF of at least 30. You can minimize your morning routine by opting for a tinted sunscreen, or our clear shield sunscreen or sheer hydration sunscreen which also contain your daily dose of moisturizer!
Remember, sunscreen is just one tool in your sun safety toolkit. Be sure to also seek shade, cover up, and avoid tanning beds to practice skin cancer prevention.
In conclusion, skin cancer is a serious and potentially deadly disease that can be prevented by practicing good sun safety habits. Protect yourself by seeking shade, covering up, using sunscreen, avoiding tanning beds, and getting regular skin checks. By taking these simple steps, you can enjoy the sun safely and reduce your risk of skin cancer!