Everyone knows that summer is the hottest time of the year, but did you know that it is precisely during this period that we need to double our attention when we expose ourselves to the sun?
Because of this, every year, several entities launch preventive actions against one of the most evident problems during the summer: skin cancer.
Skin cancer is a type of tumor that manifests itself by exposure to the sun’s rays without protection. It is a very common disease that develops due to skin cells’ uncontrolled growth, forming new layers of tissue.
Some of the most frequent symptoms are:
- spots on the skin
- black or brown spots that increase in size with time
- injuries and wounds that do not heal.
Staying informed is the most important factor in preventing any type of disease, which is precisely why we have prepared this content. Check out the myths and truths about skin cancer below and clarify your doubts right now.
1) CAN SKIN CANCER BE IDENTIFIED THROUGH SIMPLE SELF-EXAMINATION?
Myth. The diagnosis of skin cancer is carried out by means of tests carried out by a specialist doctor. It is clear that self-examination is important, as it gives clues about the disease. But, if you notice any changes, see a doctor immediately.
2) IS IT THE MOST FREQUENT TYPE OF CANCER IN WORLD?
Myth. In a few countries, skin cancer is more frequent, but it is not the most frequent worldwide, as per stats. Lung and breast cancers were the most frequent cancers worldwide, each contributing 12.3% of the total number of new cases diagnosed in 2018. (stats)
3) IS THE ONLY FORM OF PREVENTION TO USE SUNSCREEN?
Myth. Sunscreen is one of the most important means of prevention, but it is not the only one. Wearing hats, t-shirts, sunglasses, and avoiding exposure to the sun at specific times (between 10 am and 4 pm) are also ways to protect your skin from ultraviolet rays.
4) ARE FAIR-SKINNED PEOPLE MORE LIKELY TO GET THE DISEASE?
Truth. People with lower melanin levels are two to three times more likely to have skin cancer. This is because melanin serves as a protection against ultraviolet rays (responsible for causing the disease).
People with high rates of melanin in their skin are more protected. However that does not mean they are immune – the risks are for everyone.
5) CAN SKIN CANCER BE CURED?
Truth. When diagnosed early, skin cancer has a good chance of a cure. But be careful! If the cancer is in an advanced stage, the chances of recovery are very low, and can even lead to death.
The most important of all is to have a preventive attitude always, both for you and your family. Use all the options available to protect yourself from the sun, but not only in the summer, do it at all times of the year, and do not take unnecessary risks. According to the World Health Organization(WHO), detecting cancer early can greatly increase successful treatment chances, so it is necessary for everyone to have a minimum of one full body checkup every year.