Skin Cancer: Sunny days and your skin

By Brett Benton on Aug 3, 2016

Skin cancer, the most common form of all cancers, occurs when one’s normal cells undergo a transformation, growing and multiplying without normal controls. Millions of cases of skin cancer are diagnosed each year. The three most common types of skins cancer are Basal Cell Carcinoma (BBC), Squamous Cell Carcinoma (SCC), and the deadliest form of skin cancer, Melanoma. Each of these types of skin cancer are linked to their own causes, but the main cause for diagnosis is excessive exposure to UV rays. Here are some proactive steps that can be taken to reduce the risk of skin cancer.

Block the Harmful Rays 

The most common and easiest way to help prevent skin cancer is to apply sunscreen every day with a minimum  SPF of 30. This will block the harmful UV rays.

Apply and Reapply 

Are you planning on being exposed to sun rays for an extended period? It is recommended that you reapply sunscreen every two hours on the parts of the body that will be exposed to the sun, making sure to get the areas of skin that are most exposed, such as the face, neck, lips, nose and back of hands. 

Take Cover

Sunscreen is a great proactive solution to protecting yourself from UV rays, another great solution is to wear protective clothing when possible, including: wide-brimmed hats, tightly woven clothing, and long sleeves.

Skip the Tanning Bed

UV rays found in tanning beds are significantly more harmful than UV rays from the sun. Opt for a more natural way instead of artificial sun (with either tanning method you will need to apply sunscreen of at least an SPF 30).

See a Dermatologist 

Setting routine appointments with a dermatologist is highly recommended, as these forms of skin cancer are all treatable if found in the earliest stages. 

Even with taking preventative measures, you could still be at risk of getting skin cancer. Other factors play a part in the forming of skin cancer, such as your gender. More than double the amount of men have been diagnosed with skin cancer than women. Other risk factors can include, but may not be limited to skin type. Fair-skinned individuals are more prone to getting skin cancer in their lifetime than a darker skin type.  Additional factors include age, heritage, chemicals or products used on the skin, smoking, the strength of your immune system, and the location that you reside. 

Skin cancer is not something that can be predicted or made completely preventable for every person. Instead, a healthy lifestyle in which proactive steps are taken to protect yourself from harmful UV rays can be the best and only way to reduce the risk of developing skin cancer.