You can still love the sun, but reduce your chances of developing skin cancer. We’ve put together a great list of tips to protect yourself against UV radiation.
July is Ultraviolet (UV) Safety Awareness Month, offering a great reminder in these warmer months to take care of our eyes and skin. Prolonged exposure to UV radiation – through sunlight – is a primary risk factor for skin cancer, the most common type of cancer. UV light is not discernible by the human eye, but it can be felt through the skin.
UV radiation is a proven cause of Basal Cell Carcinoma and Squamous Cell Carcinoma. When detected early, these are almost always curable. Sunburn caused by UV exposure, on the other hand, contributes to melanoma, the most dangerous type of skin cancer. Sun damage is cumulative and increases your skin cancer risk over time.
You can easily reduce your likelihood of developing skin cancer by protecting yourself against UV radiation. While fair skin shows sunburn more easily, sun damage caused by both UVA and UVB occurs to all skin types. UV is an equal opportunity offender when it comes to skin damage.
Reducing Your Risk with Sun Protection
Generally speaking, the safest way to keep ourselves safe from the sun is to stay indoors and in the shade when the sun is at its peak – between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Sun exposure also occurs before and after peak hours but is less intense and easier to protect against outside peak exposure times.
When in the sun, and especially during peak times, protect yourself from both UVA and UVB rays in the following ways:
Want to know more? Check out these great resources for information on the damage caused by ultraviolet radiation and how to protect our skin and health from it:
- The Skin Cancer Foundation
- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Skin Cancer page
- Australia’s Cancer Council
- The National Cancer Institute
– Anna Nussio, Operations Manager I