Skin cancer, one of the most common types of cancers around the world, is the abnormal growth of skin cells, visible on the outer layer of your skin. Skin cancer usually affects the area that is exposed to the sun, but sometimes might develop in the unexposed areas as well. Though the treatment of skin cancer completely depends on the severity of the conditions, there are several ways you can prevent the occurrence of skin cancer by taking simple yet effective steps and making changes to your lifestyle.
There are three broad types of skin cancer that vary in occurrence, visibility, symptoms, and treatment.
Basal cell skin cancer starts in the basal cells, a group of cells responsible for the creation of new skin cells. An abnormality in these cells due to external factors results in cancer. Basal cell carcinoma or BCC usually affects the skin that is exposed to the sun. Since UV radiation is one of the main causes of basal cell skin cancer, long term exposure to strong and direct sunlight can cause malfunctioning of these cells resulting in cancer. Symptoms of basal cell carcinoma include pearly waxy bump, flat, flesh color lesion, bleeding or scabbing sores.
Squamous skin cells make up the middle and outer layers of the skin. Abnormal functioning of these skin cells leads to squamous cell carcinoma of the skin. Though it is highly aggressive, squamous cell skin cancer is not usually life threatening and can be treated. If left untreated, it can spread to other parts of the body (metastasis) and can cause serious complications. Symptoms of squamous cell carcinoma include firm red nodules and flat lesions with crusty surface.
Melanoma is the most serious form of skin cancer and develops in cells known as melanocytes. These cells are responsible for the creation of melanin, the pigment that determines your skin color. Increased exposure to UV radiation is one of the known causes of melanoma, although many a time the reason for its occurrence is unknown. Symptoms of melanoma include large brownish spots, moles that bleed, painful lesions, dark lesions on palms, soles, fingertips, or toes.
One of the major causes of skin cancer is UV radiation. The direct exposure of the skin to ultraviolet light causes abnormal functioning of the cells which then results in cancer. Though a lot of skin cancer types develop in places that are not exposed to the sun and so doctors have claimed that several other risk factors in addition to UV rays can cause skin cancer.
A wide range of risk factors can trigger skin cancer, and sometimes might also lead to the occurrence of other forms of cancer. They include:
Exposure to radiation and toxic substances - There are a wide range of toxic substances that can trigger skin cancer. Radiation, not only from the sun, but from a number of other sources such as microwaves, batteries, etc. can increase the chances of skin cancer.
There is no definitive way of preventing skin cancer, but there are several things that you can incorporate in your daily life to reduce the chances of skin cancer. They include:
Skin cancer is one of the most common forms of cancer that affects thousands of people in the US each year. Protecting ourselves from harmful UV rays and increasing our immunity are the only two major ways that can help reduce the chances of getting skin cancer. At HPFY, we have a wide range of protective sunscreen and clothing that can help your sun protection program as well as a wide range of healthy nutrition products to help boost your immunity.
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