In this article, we will learn how to prevent skin cancer and other cancer information and related things/factors interconnected with cancer prevention. Nowadays, with drastic changes in climate and high preservative content in foods, especially scientifically developed crops that are modified to produce more crops from a single strand by inducing genetic changes and increasing cell division which also increases the chance of uncontrollable cell division in the human body too.
Thus, our body has become more vulnerable and over-exposed to numerous diseases and uncertain and unpredictable genetic mutations that cause diseases like cancer; thus, knowing how to prevent it is so important. Let’s dig into the subject!
1. What is Cancer?
Cancer would be nothing but unlimited/abnormal cell division; it might be lethal. Cancer is mostly of two types one is benign, and the other is malignant; the benign one is the one that stays in one place but does not spread to other parts, whereas the latter one spreads in other parts; malignant is more dangerous as compared to the other one if early detection and treatment based upon early detection happened, Then the cancer patients life can be saved.
2. Types of Cancer
There are many types of Cancer, like lung Cancer, Breast Cancer, Skin cancer, etc. But here in this article, we will discuss Skin Cancer and its skin cancer prevention and gradually move towards how to prevent skin cancer.
2.1 Skin Cancer
Before we jump into how to prevent skin cancer, we must go through the details of skin cancer. Skin Cancer is nothing but abnormal cell division in skin cells. There are plenty of reasons for causing skin cancer, but there is certain negligence in our day-to-day life that we do unknowingly, which may increase the chances of our body causing Skin Cancer. Many other things also influence this skin cancer in today’s environment. Let us discuss the types of skin cancers.
There are many kinds of skin cancers, but three types are primary.
According to the American Cancer Society, skin cancer is the most common cancer in America; thus, knowing how to prevent skin cancer has become a necessity due to 5.4 million nonmelanoma cancer cases in America, with 76000 melanoma cases diagnosed each year, as per the reports of the American cancer society.
Here are the types of skin cancer:
- Basal Cell Cancer
- Squamous cell carcinoma
3. What is Basal Cell Cancer?
As the name already suggests, Basal cells mean something in the base, base in the epidermal base.
Now, what is the epidermis? The epidermis is the exterior layer of the skin, which helps as a shield to the body and removes the dead skin cells by shedding them off. It is that part of the skin from where the skin hair grows.
So when any abnormal skin cell growth/division or anything like that happens, it is known as basal cell cancer, or we can also say it is basal cell carcinoma.
Yet nothing to worry about; there are plenty of ways for basal cell cancer prevention.
3.1 How to Detect Basal Cell Carcinoma?
Without a proper medical checkup or skin biopsy by a dermatologist or derma-pathologist who observes or searches for the skin to appear cancerous under a microscope, a random person can’t detect cancer.
Though skin cancer is painless initially, there are certain symptoms, like if you feel suspicious moles or a waxy skin lump at a certain place with scratchy lesions in it, or even if these moles hurt, it might be skin cancer.
So if you can detect the disease, you will be able to know how to prevent it.
4. What is Squamous Cell Carcinoma?
Squamous cell carcinoma is among nonmelanoma skin cancer. It happens in the outer layer of the skin. And it is above the basal cell cancer level. This disease is also curable if treated in its early stages.
4.1 How to Detect Squamous Cell Carcinoma?
An abnormal skin growth like suspicious moles, unusual moles anything like that who does not have any family history of cancer must go for a piece of professional advice or biopsy.
5. What is Melanoma?
Well, the deadliest of all of the skin mentioned above cancers, this form of cancer is extremely lethal, and it causes death up to 75 % of total skin cancer, which includes basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell skin cancers, and also taking consideration of its own that is melanoma.
According to the American Cancer Society records Melanoma causes 10,000 deaths each year.
5.1 How to Detect Melanoma?
If you have scaly lesions and unusual skin bumps with a family history of such diseases, go for a Physical examination and biopsy.
The worst thing about these diseases is that they are painless at the early stages and cause uneasiness in the later period, mostly when it is not curable, which is why the death rate is high.
5.2 What are Nonmelanoma Skin Cancers?
Both basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell skin cancers are nonmelanoma skin cancers whose prevention after early-stage detection is possible. These kinds of skin cancers are curable at a very early stage.
6. What Enhances Skin Cancer
Four ways we enhance skin cancer in our daily life unknowingly.
Before we learn more about skin cancer prevention, we must know what causes this disease. Though this disease can happen in any part of the entire body, we will here discuss the skin cancer risk.
6.1. Excessive Sun-exposure
One of the main skin cancer risk factors includes sun exposure; you might be wondering how? Let me explain this in brief here,
According to the national cancer institute‘s cancer information suggestion, one must stay skin healthy, and one can stay skin healthy by avoiding the sun. Sun produces sun rays; this sun’s rays consist of both uva and UVB rays.
Both uva and UVB produce UV radiation; this UV radiation can cause skin damage, and guess what? Whenever we step outside into the sun, we expose ourselves to this harm-causing UV radiation.
6.2. Absorbing UV rays
These UV rays are one of the reasons behind most skin cancer; though pro-longed UV exposure causes this, here a question arises: how long is prolonged?
It varies from skin to skin and region to region where you stay. According to the national cancer institute’s information, if you have a UV rays index higher than three, you must avoid the sun and consult a health care professional on the skin regularly to prevent an increased risk of skin cancer.
6.3. Not Using Sunscreen
This prolonged sun exposure causes sun damage to the skin and leads to sunburns, and some people also might have many blistering sunburns. To avoid such sunburns, one must use the Sun protection factor (SPF)/ Sunscreen. SPF 15 blocks 95% of the UV rays, but still, it is good to use a broad-spectrum sunscreen.
6.4 Tanning Beds
The minimum sun exposure also limits tanning beds and indoor tanning, as indoor tanning also consists of many skin risk factors.
having pro-longed/ too much sun exposure can cause skin damage like premature aging, spots, wrinkles, etc. Thus damaged skin has an increased risk of skin cancer.
I was having long hours of sun exposure on the bare skin regularly, like using tanning beds which have a lot more potential for increased risk of skin cancer and premature skin aging.
7. 7 Effective Ways to Prevent Skin Cancer
So here is the list of how to prevent skin cancer risk factors:
- One should always avoid direct sunlight, especially from 10 am to 4 pm when the sun is extremely high, and seek shade during this day; if you are bound to go out, always wear protective clothing.
- Wear sunscreen and SPF lip balm, and remember it should be a broad-spectrum sunscreen with UV rays and UVB protection, apply enough sunscreen while moving out, and even reapply sunscreen whenever needed.
- Certain UV rays can even pierce the clouds, so always wear SPF, even on cloudy days.
- Avoid tanning beds because they include most skin cancer risk factors.
- Wear clothing like a lightweight but long-sleeved shirt in daylight saving time (9 am – 5 pm)
- Always wear sunglasses; a wide-brimmed hat or even an umbrella works fine while moving out in the sun’s rays.
- Those who have personal history/ family history of unusual moles of skin color with a different texture than skin with many blistering sunburns are at higher risk and should have regular skin self-exams or a health care professional.
8. In the End: How to Prevent Skin Cancer
As per many well-known institutes like the National cancer institute, those with a weakened immune system, a family/personal history of having bad sunburns, and access to high UV radiation are prone to catch certain cancers. Still, certain cancers can be prevented if the guidelines mentioned above are followed.
Read more from us here.
9.1 Do I Still Need to Apply Sunscreen on Cloudy Days?
Yes, even on cloudy days, sunscreen is still advised. The bulk of UV rays are not blocked by clouds; they can still enter and harm your skin. Applying broad-spectrum sunscreen is essential for safeguarding your skin from UVA and UVB rays.
9.2 Are There Any Lifestyle Choices That Can Help Avoid Skin Cancer?
It is true that particular lifestyle choices can help avoid skin cancer. These include exercising frequently, eating a diet high in fruits and vegetables, and abstaining from harmful habits like smoking, which raises the risk of several cancers, including skin cancer.
9.3 Can the Risk of Skin Cancer be Influenced by Genetics?
Genetics can affect a person’s risk of developing skin cancer. People who have a family history of skin cancer may be more susceptible. People with a family history of skin cancer should be extra careful to avoid the sun and think about getting frequent skin checks.