Skin Cancer: Prevention Is Key

Skin cancer is on the rise. While skin cancers usually affect Caucasians, outside workers, smoker,s and those with a family history of skin cancer, everyone is at risk. Statistics demonstrate that the cases of skin cancer have doubled every decade over the past forty years, and we need to take action how to prevent skin cancer from affecting us.

There are two types of skin cancer that are very lethal if left too late. Therefore, it is crucial to follow these skin cancer prevention tips. The following information is sourced in part from the world’s largest healthcare organization, NHS Direct Online.

The best way to protect your skin against cancer is to take care in the sun. Take preventative action and avoid burning the skin. Cover up with loose fitting clothes, because the damage is done the minute the skin has been burned by the sun.

Your arms and legs should be covered whenever possible. This will help to protect you from skin cancer and from heat stroke as well. It’s also important to drink plenty of water to replace the natural fluids that are lost on hot days.

Keep in mind that tightly woven fabrics will provide the best protection from the sun. You should also avoid direct sunlight during the afternoon sun from 11am to 3pm as this is when the sun is at its strongest. If you must go outside during these times then make sure to cover up with clothes, hat and sunglasses and apply plenty of sunscreen.

Always use a sun protection lotion with an SPF (sun protection factor) of at least 15, although exceptionally fair-skinned people, children and people living in exposed areas of the world need to use lotions with an SPF of up to 40.

Be sure that your entire body is covered by sunscreen with sun protection factor above 15. The absolute minimum to cover up is your face, hands, feet and neck but you should also consider using it all over as the most vulnerable parts of your body are the spots that are not usually exposed to sunlight.

Sunscreen should be applied at least 30 minutes before going out in the sun, and reapplied every couple of hours. perspiration, water and friction from towels will cause the protection to wear off. Even waterproof sunscreen should be reapplied after swimming.

Don’t believe those who tell you that the water will protect you from sunburn. Always use waterproof sun protection when you are out swimming. UVA and UVB rays will penetrate through two feet of water. Similarly, clouds and fog do not prevent ultraviolet rays from reaching and damaging your skin. The ozone layer is meant to protect us, but we’ve damaged it to the point that we now need to protect ourselves.

Even on cloudy days, it’s important to cover up with SPF 15, put on a hat and wear sunglasses that have UVA and UVB filters. The sun’s rays can damage the retinas of the eyes and ultimately create cataracts, so it’s important to protect yourself today to avoid future disease and discomfort.