As experts point to climate change as the source of the globe-spanning inclement weather, a more personal side-effect of climate change could be higher incidences of skin cancer. In the United States alone, the data shows that, since the 1970s, malignant melanoma rates have increased by 4% each year.
Though your personal choices may be unable to affect the magnitude of the climate change crisis, you are able to protect yourself from the sun. Experts agree that certain actions and behaviors can lower your risk of developing skin cancers and help keep you protected.
Sunscreen Use Is Vital
As temperatures rise, many experts predict this to increase outside activity. Many know the importance of using sunscreen. Unfortunately, many use sunscreen either incorrectly, use sunscreen too sporadically to protect themselves, or both.
To use sunscreen correctly while you are outside, make sure you are reapplying sunscreen every two hours. This time frame can still apply even if you aren’t outside. If you sit near a window, the UV rays from the sun can still damage your skin.
Another important tip is to utilize sunscreen every day. Moisturizers can be found that contain SPF. Make sure you purchase one that is broad-spectrum to cover you from the full UV spectrum.
Consider How Much of Your Skin You Expose
As temperatures rise and people spend more time outside, you have to begin considering how much sun exposure you accumulate. Even with incorporating a consistent sunscreen application regimen, extra protection can help.
Wearing lightweight long-sleeved shirts and pants can help offer extra safety against harmful sun rays.
Schedule Skin Cancer Screenings
While sunscreen and protective clothing can help prevent skin cancer, skin cancer screenings are the only way to detect cancer.
The current recommendation for skin cancer screenings is once a year; however, this is subject to change. As temperatures rise and more people experience greater levels of sun exposure, it may be safest to have multiple screenings a year. Remember, early detection of skin cancer is paramount to treatment. The five-year survival rate of those whose melanoma is detected before spread to lymph nodes is 99%.
Dr. Vivian Bucay Provides Screenings in Texas
Working with a trusted dermatologist not only helps with skin cancer screenings but can also identify areas of concern that you may have otherwise overlooked on your own.
At the Bucay Center for Dermatology and Aesthetics, Dr. Bucay has over thirty years of private practice experience. She and her team know the dangers of sun exposure and know what to do to reduce the risk of skin cancer. To schedule your skin cancer screening, Contact our La Casita office at 210-692-3000 or call 210-370-9995 for our Sonterra/Stone Oak office.