Sunscreen May Prevent Skin Cancer
Hopefully not many of us have abused ourselves the way the way the lady in the photo below has. While people are becoming more educated regarding sun exposure, there still are many who do not understand what constitutes safe sun. Almost everyone is in the same boat when it comes to choosing what is the best sun protection for you and your family. According to Rebecca Sutton PhD, an environmental chemist and a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley, titanium dioxide and zinc oxide, cover a huge amount of the bad light spectrum (UVA and UVB). These are the only two ingredients I ever recommend for my patients, my family, and myself.
Skin Cancer Warning Signs
By the time one starts thinking of skin cancer, they probably have many other signs and a past history indicating that they may have something going on. Frequent burns as a child and a teenager (actually, 3 or more) puts one at much greater risk. Obviously, frequent sunbathing or using tanning beds contributes to the development of skin cancer. Heredity plays a part. Once into the fourth and fifth decades, the skin has attained the appearance of a blotchy, rough, slightly reddened or maybe even yellowish (actinic bronzing) texture and presentation. There may be rough patches that become dry and scaly, then get better, only to become dry and scaly again. These are known as Actinic Keratoses, or pre-cancers.
Your lips may be dry and peel, no matter how much lip balm you apply. Some of these dry, scaly patches may even start to raise and crust. This is known as Actinic Cheilitis, and is also known by other names such as solar cheilitis, farmer’s lip, and sailor’s lip. Personally, living in South Florida and having so many folks that do develop this I feel it should be termed “Tennis Babe Lip”. Treatment (and you do want to get treatment as it is impossible to predict if it will develop into squamous cell carcinoma or not) involves creams, freezing with liquid nitrogen (for small lesions), surgical removal, or laser therapy.
Why Zinc And Titanium?
Zinc and titanium do not degrade like chemical sunscreens or sunblocks, and they are resistant to light and heat, which, wouldn’t you think, would be a necessary component to a sound sunscreen? Not always so. Avoid the chemicals. The physical blocks (again, zinc and titanium) can handle what we throw at them: Heat and Sunlight!
Don’t worry about looking pasty. Today’s formulations are microfine and can be transparent. There is nothing better for your skin’s protection!
The Tanning Bed Base Tan
This does nothing for you other than causing more damage. I have friends who own tanning salons, and I respect their business desire. However, I cannot ever recommend this type of recreation. It is neither healthful nor protecting. It simply makes you look old way before your time, and your dermatologist will have a much busier time keeping up with keeping you healthy. you may not worry about looking youthful now, but you soon will.