Would you go outside in a storm without an umbrella? Would you walk in a blizzard without snow boots or a coat? Nope. Then why would you go outside in the summer without wearing sunscreen. Hmm, you probably think you don’t need it. Well consider this your official Burn Notice!
According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, skin cancers are on the rise especially in young adults. In addition to the slogan of “Wrap it Up” for safe sex, we should also preach “Lather it On” in regards to safe skin practices. Melanoma one of the deadliest forms of skin cancer has experienced a 400% increase in young men and women.
So why the rise? Tanning beds! The International Agency for Research on Cancer an affiliate of the World Health Organization has classified tanning beds in their Group 1 alongside other cancer-causing substances such as cigarettes. However, the FDA, the regulating body in the USA has characterized tanning beds as a Class I medical device. It is in the same group as first aid plastic bandages and tongue depressors.
So whats the big deal? Over time the sun’s rays penetrate the skin and cause irreversible damage by rapidly changing and destroying the skin’s cells and layers. As we know rapid cell change can cause various types of cancers depending on the area of change. It is for this reason that Blacks and Whites need to wear sunscreen.
Did you know the survival rate for Blacks with melanoma is 15% less than that of Whites? Did you also know that Blacks are more likely to present to their provider with a more advance stage of skin cancer? Well this is because for years, I mean years, Blacks were under the impression that the pigment of their skin somehow protected them from the sun. Unfortunately this is not true. Every ethnicity has the same basic structure of skin, made up of layers of cells, which are sensitive to the sun regardless of the color.
So that being said, let’s talk about what type of sunscreen you should use.
Please govern yourself accordingly. Everything in moderation!