Have fun in the summer sun
Summertime is here, and it is unavoidable that we will be spending more time in the outdoors soaking up the sunshine. We are not suggesting that it is less important to protect our kids and ourselves from the harmful UV rays all year around, however, UVB radiation has the greatest intensity during summer months. In this article, our Charlotte dermatologists will offer some tips to help you and your family stay safe in the sun this summer.
Skin cancer risk factors
The key to reducing your risk for exposure to skin cancers is knowledge of your risk factors, and constantly monitoring your skin for any changes that could be indications of a cancerous condition. There are some individuals who have inherent traits that make them a higher risk for skin cancer such as:
- Pale skin that burns easily and doesn’t tan
- Individuals with natural red or blond hair
- a previous incidence of skin cancer
- Family history of skin cancer
- Multiple or unusual moles
- A history of severe sunburns
The most important risk factor is also the one we can control the easiest; our level of exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation. UV radiation most commonly is absorbed from either natural sunlight or tanning booths. Unprotected or excessive exposure to UV rays is extremely damaging to your skin and significantly increases your skin cancer risk. Lesser know is the fact that workplace exposure to coal tar, pitch, creosote, or arsenic compounds can also increase your risk. If you work in a profession where you might be exposed to any of these chemicals, consult your physician for advice on how to protect your skin.
Rising cancer rates in children
Studies have shown a rising skin cancer rate amongst our younger generation. Most people are unaware that nearly 25% of a lifetime’s sun exposure occurs from birth to 18 years of age. Excessive and unprotected exposure to UV radiation causes skin discoloration, early aging and excessive wrinkles, as well as skin cancer. It is vitally important that whenever your children are out in the sun, they should be protected with sunscreen.
How to protect your skin from excessive UVR
- Wear protective clothing, hats, and sunglasses.
- Avoid tanning beds.
- Limit sun exposure
- As much as possible, avoid peak hours of sun intensity (morning and mid-day or 10 AM-4 PM)
- Use sunscreen even on cloudy days.
- Use a sunscreen SPF of 30 or higher. Products with zinc or titanium provide optimal protection.
- Stay hydrated.
Compassionate care for skin cancer patients in Charlotte
For severe sunburn issues, the clinicians at Dermatology Specialists of Charlotte can provide high quality, innovative skin care including medical and cosmetic dermatology in a caring and professional environment. Dr. Nixon and Dr. Haught are board certified dermatologists whose dedication, experience, and knowledge will provide the best possible treatment for your skin, hair, and cosmetic concerns.
Dermatology Specialists of Charlotte also offers medical, cosmetic, and surgical dermatology; including removal of skin cancer. They provide a full range of cosmetic offerings such as skin tightening, fat reduction, chemical peels, Botox treatments, microdermabrasion, and more. They provide treatment for both adult and pediatric patients, and for conditions that cause teenage and adult acne. Call their office today for a skin care evaluation and analysis of your concerns regarding skin cancer or any other skin condition.