Did you know that skin cancer is the most common cancer in the US? More than 9,500 cases of skin cancer are reported every day and the majority are from too much exposure to UV rays. While there are deadly skin cancers like melanoma, basal cell carcinoma is the most common of skin cancers. The great thing about basil cell and most skin cancers is that they are preventable. With just a little bit of effort, you can reduce your chances of contracting skin cancer substantially.
Protective Skin Care
Protective skincare is at the top of that list. It’s fairly inexpensive and has the potential to wipe out those bad rays from the sun. Here are two types to consider:
Make-Up. Many of the foundations available today have some sort of SPF in them. Be sure to look for these.
Sunscreen. Stores carry sunscreen from SPF 15, all the way to 90. There is no excuse for not putting sunscreen on when you go out in the sun. And it doesn’t matter what race you are, how light or dark-complected you are. No one is immune to skin cancer and the UV rays from the sun.
Covering your body as much as possible can help minimize exposure to the sun. Consider the following items:
Hats. Whether you work outside or you’re sitting by the pool or the beach, take a broad-rim hat with you. This reduces exposure to your face, neck, and shoulders.
Swim Shirts. If spending long hours at the pool or the beach, remember to cover up. Use swim shirts as much as possible, or swim with a t-shirt over your bathing suit.
Umbrellas. Use umbrellas at the beach or pool. These too can offer protection from the sun, as well as keep you cooler.
Sunglasses. Protect your eyes as well, by using eyewear at all times.
Long Shirts. If you work outside in a construction-type or landscaping-type job, remember to cover up as well. Long shirts and pants can save your life.
Limit Your Exposure
The sun reaches its peak temperatures and exposures mid-day. Avoid long periods of exposure from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. If you are going to be out, make sure that you are practicing safe skincare. Consider going to the pool earlier in the morning or later in the evening to avoid the UV rays. Choose activities during the day that can be enjoyed in the shade or inside.
Check-In with Your Doctor
Just as you would for breast cancer, do regular skin checks. These will help you watch for questionable spots. If you’ve had skin cancer or you are at greater risk, per your occupation or family health history, consult with a dermatologist on a regular basis. They are medical professionals and know how to recognize skin cancer.
Spring and summer are wonderful seasons of the year. The sunshine brings light and warmth. It helps the flowers and plants to grow. Mentally, it increases our vitamin D, giving us more energy and fueling the serotonin in our brains. Enjoying the sun is a good thing, but just be mindful of getting too much. Protect yourself with sunscreen. Cover up yourself and be sure that you are not overexposing your skin. Use protective clothing like hats and long-sleeve shirts to avoid too many UV rays. Plan ahead and try to limit exposure to the brightest parts of the day. Do self-checks and consult with your doctor regularly. Doing all of these things doesn’t guarantee that you will never have a diagnosis of skin cancer; however, it can prevent the chances of that significantly. Be vigilant and proactive now.