Skin cancer mainly affects people over the age of 50. But young people are not exempt from this danger either, especially if they are exposed to the sun without applying a lotion or sunscreen on their skin.
The most common type of skin cancer is non-melanoma, which has received this name due to the fact that it shows no traces of malignant melanoma caused by melanocytes. Its appearance is influenced by two major factors: the radiation emitted by the sun through ultraviolet rays and DNA mutations in epithelial cells.
Although it is the most common type of cancer, the mortality rate caused by skin cancer has stabilized recently. In addition, specialists are discovering more and more ways to diagnose it in a timely manner.
Being so widespread, it is important to know as much as possible about this disease and to learn to identify its early symptoms.
In today’s article, we give you seven important pieces of information about skin cancer and how it develops.
1. Sun exposure increases the risk of skin cancer
Many people believe that continuous sun exposure does not affect them in any way, thinking that the worst effect is sunburn, which heals in a few days.
What many do not know is that sunlight alters skin cells and greatly increases the risk of long-term skin cancer.
2. Using sunscreen is not enough
This product reduces the negative effects of the sun on the skin, but even regular use of sunscreen does not guarantee that you will never suffer from this type of cancer.
In reality, the sun is just one of the factors associated with the development of skin cancer. In addition to ultraviolet rays, toxins, cigarettes and an improper diet can also contribute to the onset of the disease.
3. Any mole can be malignant
In most cases, skin cancer has as its starting point a spot that develops abnormally.
However, in certain circumstances, the disease starts from a mole on the body that has been invaded by malignant cells. This type of cancer is known as melanoma. Melanoma is a rare form of skin cancer, but unfortunately it is also the most aggressive.
4. Larger moles increase the risk of skin cancer
The risk of a mole being malignant is directly proportional to its size. These dangerous moles are called congenital melanocytic nevi. They are present on the body from birth and tend to increase over the years.
5. Tanning at the solarium can be dangerous
The constant use of tanning devices or lamps is a risk factor that we must not ignore.
Even though they seem like a great alternative to sun exposure, the solarium and other similar devices emit ultraviolet radiation that can be dangerous.
6. Skin cancer can be caused by an infection
Another cause of skin cancer is chronic lesions and swelling caused by severe burns and infections. If the skin that protects the inside of the body has a serious problem, the risk of developing malignant cells increases considerably.
7. “ABCDE” rule for the identification of skin cancer
The appearance of spots on the skin and the change in the appearance of a mole are the most obvious signs that indicate the probability that you suffer from this type of cancer.
There is a way you can tell if moles or skin blemishes are a symptom of cancer, namely the “ABCDE” rule:
- A – Asymmetry: One part of the mole does not correspond to the other.
- B – Border : The edges of the mole are irregular and have an unusual appearance.
- C – Color: The moles have shades of brown and black. But sometimes they can become white, bluish or reddish.
- D – Diameter: The mole has a diameter of over 6 millimeters.
- E – Evolution: Over time, you notice other changes in the shape, size and color of the mole.
Remember that one of the most effective ways to prevent the development of skin cancer is the annual visit to the dermatologist.
Pay attention to all the signs that you consider abnormal and ask for the necessary tests for more safety.