Sunscreen has long been used for protection against the sun’s harmful rays. The sun can damage your skin, heightening the risk of skin cancer and premature skin aging. However, rumors about sunscreen, namely regarding its safety and effectiveness, always seem to be swirling around the Internet.
Let’s learn more about sunscreen and the role it plays in skin cancer prevention.
Sunscreen and Skin Cancer Prevention
Skin cancer risk is dependent on both exposures to solar radiation and genetic susceptibility. So, while some people’s skin cancer risk will be naturally higher due to genetic factors, you can control the amount of solar radiation that you receive.
Sunscreen blocks ultraviolet radiation from the sun from being absorbed into the skin. Especially when you use sunscreen every time you go outside, it can significantly reduce your risk of developing skin cancer.
Sunscreen has been shown to offer protection against squamous cell carcinoma, basal cell carcinoma, and melanoma, the three most prevalent types of skin cancer. Used on a daily basis, SPF 15 sunscreen can lower your risk of squamous cell carcinoma by around 40% and your risk of melanoma by around 50%.
Concerns Surrounding Sunscreen
Most of the concerns surrounding sunscreen are related to oxybenzone, which is what’s known as a chemical blocker in sunscreen. Oxybenzone absorbs the sun’s ultraviolet rays to stop them from being absorbed into the skin.
Oxybenzone may behave as a hormone disruptor, which is a chemical that may alter your body’s hormone production. Further studies are needed to prove that oxybenzone has a negative impact on the health of humans.
If you’re concerned about the potential effects of oxybenzone and other chemical blockers in sunscreen, opt for sunscreen with physical blockers instead. Physical blockers, such as zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, reflect the sun’s UV rays. Without the concerns surrounding chemical blockers, physical blockers will protect your skin against the sun’s harsh rays.
Contact The Bowman Institute today to learn more about sunscreen and how it can protect you against skin cancer.