Skin cancer: Missing eyelids when using SPF moisturiser a ‘risk’
The summer months are almost upon us, when we will inevitably be spending more hours outside in the warm sun. It also means it’s time to seriously protect your skin.
When not kept in check, sun exposure can be dangerous. Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer. The American Academy of Dermatology reports 9,500 people are diagnosed with skin cancer every day in the United States.
While a lot of people turn to sunscreen and other preventions, many forget to protect sensitive areas of their face, like the lips, ears, and the area around the eyes.
When is sunscreen necessary?
Sunscreen is really only necessary when planning to spend half an hour or more in summer sunshine. If you are just popping out at lunchtime it is unlikely that you will need sunscreen, especially if you applied a moisturiser with SPF that morning or are in and out of the shade of buildings and trees.
What are moisturisers with SPF for?
They are fine for offering some protection if you are going out briefly. But if you intend spending some time outdoors, especially between April and September, then sunscreens are much more effective.
Moisturisers providing SPF do not bind as well to the skin as sunscreen, and so are not intended to provide adequate protection for extended periods in the sun.
Many People Are Forgetting To Use Sunscreen On Areas At Risk Of Skin Cancer
The prospect of having skin cancer is scary, but it’s something that could be easily avoided with a couple of easy steps.
Putting on sunscreen is one of the best methods to prevent skin cancer, but most people are actually doing it wrong.
Although most people use sun protection on their face and body on a daily basis, most of them actually skip on a very vulnerable spot: the eyelids. Putting on shades as a shield against the sun is a great help, but not doing so exposes the eyelid to the risk of skin cancer.
Sunscreen Vs. Moisturizer With SPF
In a study published in the journal PLOS One on Wednesday, April 3, a number of participants were given moisturizers with SPF to apply on their skin. Based on this experiment, the researchers found that most participants skip 20 percent of the region of the eyelids. They conducted another test the participants were given actual sunscreen and discovered that only 14 percent of them skipped that area.
“People were applying cream and going out in the sun thinking they were protected,” said Austin McCormick, the study’s principal author. “And yet one of the most vulnerable areas was left unprotected.”
Only 10 percent of skin cancer occurs on the eyelids but if left ignored, the result can be deadly. According to the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, 70 percent of eyelid skin cancers occur on the lower eyelid, not the upper one where eyeshadow is applied, so it is highly essential to always include this area in one’s sunscreen routine.
Other Skin Cancer-Prone Areas
Aside from the eyelids, other areas of the body that are prone to skin cancer include the tip of the ears, the bottom lip, and the sides of the neck. One of the primary reasons why they’re more prone to cancer is the thinness of the skin surrounding them, making them really vulnerable to the sun’s UV rays.
Dermatologists everywhere are campaigning for skin cancer awareness, especially during the summer season. They recommend to always wear sunscreen during the day, and make sure to include the eyelid area. For more protection, people should always use an umbrella when walking, and pair it with sunglasses.
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