Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States. It is estimated that 1 million people are diagnosed with skin cancer each year. The American Cancer Society identifies melanoma, basal cell carcinoma, and squamous cell carcinoma as the most common types of skin cancer. This article will take a look at some of the ways that you can help lower your risk of developing skin cancer at any point during your life.
Wear Protective Hats
Wearing protective hats can help you protect your skin. One of the best types of hat to wear is one that has a wide brim all around it. This type of hat will provide the best possible protection for your skin while you are out in the sun enjoying yourself. Another option is to wear baseball caps or other form fitted hats. This is because they also give great UV protection. The last option would be to wear a hooded sweatshirt whenever you are heading out. So you don’t have to worry about applying sunscreen until after you leave. Where it can be easily rubbed off by putting on clothing over top of it.
Limit Time Outside During Peak Hours
UV radiation from the sun is at its strongest around 10 AM to 4 PM. Therefore, people should avoid going outside during these peak hours as much as possible unless they are covered up with protective clothing and sunscreen. This means that if you have a morning or late afternoon event outdoors that you need to look presentable for, then you might want to consider getting your outfit ready the night before. So there is no rush in applying sunscreen when you get up in the morning.
Use Sun Screen
When it comes time to apply sunscreen, make sure that you are using one with at least an SPF of 30. If your skin is sensitive, try a lower number to start with, but do make an effort to find something in this range. Because, anything less can wear off quickly and won’t protect your skin from the harsh rays of the sun when they come into contact with it. In addition, spending time outdoors without protection can cause your skin cancer risk to increase significantly when compared with spending time in the sun when you are wearing sunscreen that has an SPF of 30 or higher.
Avoid UV Tanning Beds
When you are looking to get a nice deep tan, it is tempting for many people to use UV-tanning beds. However, when you are in one of these beds, your skin is exposed to far more ultraviolet radiation than can be found naturally outdoors. This type of exposure has the same cancer-causing effects as exposing yourself directly to the sun’s rays. There are other ways that you can safely get a tan without risking developing skin cancer. If you must use an indoor tanning booth, make sure to apply sunscreen with an SPF rating of at least 15 before entering the booth.
Check Your Skin Monthly
Most people don’t think about checking their skin until after something has shown up. To prevent this from happening, try to do a monthly check of your skin for any changes. By catching any abnormalities early, it can help make treatment more manageable. While also making it less costly than if you had waited and ended up getting treatment for a more severe issue.
If there are any moles or other spots on your skin that have changed color, grown larger, or started itching, then you should schedule an appointment with your doctor as soon as possible. So they can take a look at what is going on right away instead of trying to hope the problem gets better on its own.
See A Dermatologist Regularly
Seeing a dermatologist on a regular basis may not be of the utmost importance to every person. Still, if you have a family history of skin cancer or a bad habit of having your skin exposed to lots of harmful UV radiation, then it’s highly recommended that you see your doctor at least twice yearly. A checkup can help catch any abnormal cells before they become full-blown cancers and give you the opportunity you need to start treatment early enough for it to do some good.
Limit Your Alcohol Consumption
Drinking excessive amounts of alcohol can increase your chances of developing all types of cancers, including skin cancer. If you would like to avoid this risk, then try limiting yourself to no more than a few drinks a week. Also swap out any glass of wine for a non-alcoholic option the next time you’re at a restaurant with lots of different choices on their menu. Studies have shown that drinking red wine in moderation is beneficial because it inhibits collagen breakdown. Still, if you really want to protect your body and your skin, then it’s best to all drink alcohol on rare occasions.
There are many simple steps that a person can take to reduce their chances of developing skin cancer. A few important ones include avoiding being outside during the hours of 10 AM and 4 PM, checking your skin monthly for any changes, and seeing a dermatologist on a regular basis if you have a serious history of damage to your skin. Also limiting your alcohol consumption to keep your body healthy. If you follow these tips, then you should be able to enjoy yourself without having to worry about getting sun damage. Or things such as developing unsightly spots on your body from melanoma.