It’s summer! It’s hot, it’s sunny, it’s nice!
Nothing feels better than a refreshing bath in the sea/pool, then putting your belly in the sun with a good book in your hand and enjoying a cold drink!
Soon we will all come out looking for the best ultraviolets that gives us the most beautiful and durable tan without roasting yourself…
Besides stimulating the synthesis of vitamin D and the secretion of endorphins, sun exposure comes with some risks. A recent study (June 2015) published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, made me recall that I should be tanning responsibly.
The study shows that the incidence of melanoma – the most aggressive type of skin cancer – has doubled in the last 30 years in the United States. If no serious action is taken, rates will increase in the next 15 years; thus it would reach a total of 112,000 cases of melanoma by 2030.
The incidence of other types of cancer is declining, while the number of people who are diagnosed with melanoma increases every year.
The truth about melanoma:
- Skin cancer can affect anyone, regardless of skin color; people with lighter skin have a higher risk.
- In the US, in 2011, more than 65 000 cases of melanoma were diagnosed.
- Melanoma can leave traces and can be deadly; the risk of death increases with age and is higher for men than for women.
- The annual cost of treating new cases of melanoma is expected to triple from 2011 to 2030 ($ 457 million to $ 1.6 billion).
- Awareness campaigns can help prevent around 21 000 cases of melanoma and save $ 250 million annually by 2030.
UV exposure causes 90% of all cases of melanoma in the United States.
- Tanning and sunburns are the body’s defense response against UV exposure. Tanning is a symptom of an assault on the skin!
- More than 1 in 3 Americans admit to having a sunburn each year.
- Tanning tanning beds expose the skin to more intense UV radiation than the sun. Each year, nearly 6,200 cases of melanoma are caused by exposure to tanning beds.
Each of us can take steps to prevent skin cancer by realising what is the duration for a healthy exposure to UV light and by beeing aware of the risks we take when tanning.
Spending excessive time in the sun increases the risk of skin cancer, especially if you do not use sunscreen. There is a direct correlation between the total time of exposure to the sun (during a lifetime) and frequency of burns. Tanning excessively can damage your skin, causing wrinkles and premature aging.
Instead, it is believed that a gradual sun exposure, is not dangerous and thus one can easily get a nice and healthy tan.
It requires the following precautions:
- You must understand that a strongly tanned or burnt skin is a sign of aggression from the UV light.
- Protect yourself and your family..Kids need protection since their skin can be even more sensitive!
- Ware wide-brimmed hats, sunglasses, loose clothing.
- Stay in the shade, especially at lunch
- Use protective creams with SPF 15 or higher, even on cloudy days (some UVs pass through the clouds). Sunscreens are effective when used along with other “accessories” and protective when properly reapplied.
- Avoid tanning beds.
Recently I learned of a new technology available to help us monitor our sun exposure.
UVA + B SunFriend is an innovative device that looks like a wrist watch and that helps you protect yourself from excessive sun exposure, while still enjoying a healthy dose of UVB and synthesize enough vitamin D. What do you think? Do you also invest in gadgets?
For any advice, never forget, your pharmacists are always available to answer your questions for a smart and healthy life!
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