May is National Skin Cancer Month

Thursday, May 5, 2011


Absolutely Natural is doing its part in promoting “safe sun.” For every order more than $50.00 we are giving away a 2oz SPF 15, which is one of our maximum sunscreens.

One would think that with the heightened use of sunscreens over the past 10-15 years and a supposedly more educated population that skin cancer would be on the decline. Unfortunately, it is not. It is estimated there are 2,000,000 new cases of skin cancer diagnosed every year; it is the most common form of cancer for humans.

Three Kinds of Cancer:
The two most common forms are basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma. They are referred to as nonmelanoma skin cancer. The most dangerous form is melanoma that tends to metastasize throughout the body and can cause death. There are almost 70,000 new cases of melanoma every year.

Basal cell accounts for 90% of new skin cancers and usually begins as a small dome shaped bump. They can appear very dark and are usually irregular shaped. Squamous begins in the squamous cells which are flat, scale-like cells that form the surface of the skin, the hollow organs of the body and the respiratory and digestive tracts. So, squamous can form in any of these tissues. It most frequently appears on the skin as rough, red bumps on the scalp, face, ears and backs of the hands. It can take 10 years for the cancer to invade deeply into the skin and become fully developed squamous cell carcinoma.

The risks for developing any of these cancers include age, UV exposure in tanning beds, therapeutic radiation and most prominently exposure to the sun.

HIGH SPF & Skin Cancer:
So, why aren’t the SPF 50’s, 75’s and 100’s of the suncare industry eliminating these cancers? Why aren’t the 12 hour waterproof products reducing the amount of skin cancer? Well, any of you that have read my blogs in the past know that I think these modern day chemical “wonders” are the culprit, not the cure.

My theory is that people are duped into thinking they are protected all day long by an application of these super high SPF’s. So they stay out in the sun longer and actually get more harmful exposure than if they would reapply, using a more sensible SPF instead.

Skin Caner Screening:
Although you should be diligent in checking yourself out for irregular shaped, dark bumps (especially if they are larger than a pencil eraser) for basal cell and rough red bumps for squamous, the only way to truly get diagnosed is with regular trips to the dermatologist. Skin cancer, if caught in the early stages, usually is easily taken care of while melanoma, left unchecked, can kill you as it does 12,000 people every year. Totally preventable with proper protection in the sun and regular screening with your doctor. Be safe.

Best regards


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