How to protect yourself against skin cancer

To avoid skin cancer, it is essential not to be directly in the sun and wear sunscreen, proper clothing, a hat and sunglasses. In addition, it is important to wear gloves whenever cleaning products are used, as they may contain chemicals that irritate the skin, increasing the risk of cancer.

Generally, this type of cancer is more common in people with light skin, hair and eyes, but it can appear on any type of skin, so it is important to pay attention to symptoms such as an enlarged sign or mole and skin wounds. that take more than 1 month to heal.

Some important recommendations for preventing the development of skin cancer include:

1. Protect your skin from the sun

To protect your skin properly, you should avoid sun exposure in the hottest times of the day, especially in the summer, between 11 am and 4 pm, trying to stay in the shade whenever possible, such as staying in cotton or canvas tents that absorb 50% of ultraviolet radiation.

In addition, it is important to:

  • Wear a hat with wide brim;
  • Wear a cotton T-shirt, which is not black, or clothes with sun protection that have the symbol FPU 50+ on the label;
  • Wear sunglasses with UV protection, purchased from specialized opticians;
  • Wear sunscreen.

These tips should be kept both on the beach, in the pool and in any type of outdoor exposure, as in agriculture or physical activity in the garden, for example.

2. Wear sunscreen

You should apply daily sunscreen against UVA and UVB radiation with a factor of at least 15, applying the product on the whole body, including on the face, feet, hands, ears and neck, re-applying every 2 hours or after going on. water, because its protection decreases. Sun protection should be used throughout the year.

See which sunscreen is most recommended for your skin type:

Sunscreen factorSkin typeSkin type description
SPF between 30 and 60White or very white skinShe has freckles on her face, light eyes and light or red hair and her skin burns very easily and never gets tanned, becoming red when exposed to the sun.
SPF between 20 and 30Light brown skin to mulattoThe skin is light brown, the hair light brown, dark or black. The skin sometimes burns, but it also tans.
SPF between 6 and 15Black skinThe skin is very dark, rarely burns and tans a lot, even if the tan is not very visible.

In winter it is also important to apply sunscreen because even when the weather is overcast, UV radiation passes through clouds and negatively affects unprotected skin.

3. Observe the skin once a month

The skin should be observed at least once a month, looking for spots, signs or spots that have changed color, have irregular edges, various colors or have increased in size. Here are the  signs of skin cancer to assess at home.

In addition, it is important to see a dermatologist at least once a year to do a thorough skin exam and detect early changes.

4. Avoid tanning

Using tanning beds increases the chances of getting skin cancer, because although the skin becomes more brown quickly, intense exposure to UVB and UVA rays increases the chances of changes in the skin cells.

Using sunscreen on your lips and protecting your skin by  bandaging  on signs, tattoos and scars may not be enough.

Who is most at risk for skin cancer?

The chances of developing skin cancer are greater in people who:

  • They have white skin, freckles, hair and light eyes;
  • Have a history of a father, mother or grandparent with skin cancer;
  • They are easily burned from the sun with burns and never tan;
  • They have many spots or spots on the skin;
  • They have professions with high sun exposure, such as fishermen or farmers.

Thus, the lighter the skin tone, the greater the probability of developing skin cancer and, in case of any suspicious changes, consult the dermatologist as soon as possible to make the diagnosis early, starting treatment and increasing the chances of a cure.

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