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Sunlight; A Double-Edged Sword

Discussion in 'Oncology' started by epicermis, Aug 19, 2019.

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Are you more likely to change you sun-exposure routine ?

  1. Yes

  2. No

  3. Maybe

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  1. epicermis

    epicermis Young Member

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    Sunshine, bright and warm, has always been associated in our minds with happy summer days or early mornings well spent with loved ones. Have you ever really thought about sun rays hitting your skin and what it may bring? Sure, sun exposure has been related to a better mental health, a glowing complexion. People feel that the sun makes them feel and look good. But have you ever associated the risk to one of the most feared diseases in our modern era despite all the medical advancements? Cancer.

    Prolonged sun exposure not only possess a risk for accelerated effects of aging by literally damaging your skin cells, that what people call ‘tanning’. But it’s also been related an increased risk for developing skin cancer.

    Of course, we’re not asking anyone to drop the benefits of natural sunlight to avoid the risks. Without sunscreen and proper SPF, you could safely soak up to 20 minutes of sunlight each day, however, any longer requires generous application of sunscreen and reapplication if necessary, during the day.

    Any longer than that or without enough protection, you’re risking dehydration, discolored areas of the skin called mottled pigmentation, fine and coarse wrinkles due to destruction of the elastic tissue, benign tumors and finally precancerous and cancerous lesions caused by loss of the skin's immune function.

    It goes without mentioning that cancer is characterized by abnormal cell growth and indeed it’s a nasty disease, however, skin cancer is not always as obvious as a big scary mole. It comes in various forms with various degrees of severity and rates of curing.
    Mainly you can divide skin cancer into three major forms;
    Basal cell and squamous cell cancers are less serious types and make up 95% of all skin cancers. Also referred to as non-melanoma skin cancers, they are highly curable when treated early.

    Melanoma, made up of abnormal skin pigment cells called melanocytes, is the most serious form of skin cancer and causes 75% of all skin cancer deaths. Left untreated, it can spread to other organs and is difficult to control.

    So, please consider your lifestyle and sun exposure duration. Invest in a decent sun protection cream and what out for the ‘ABCD’ rule that tells you the warning signs of melanoma:
    Asymmetry
    Border: ragged blurred edges
    Color: uneven shades
    Diameter: a significant change in size
     

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