YOUR SKIN CANCER QUESTIONS: ANSWERED!
I DON’T WEAR SUNSCREEN BUT I’M RARELY OUT IN THE SUN FOR A LONG TIME. CAN I STILL GET SKIN CANCER?
There are three main causes for skin cancer: Skin colour, how much time you spend outdoors, and your use of tanning beds. Avoiding one but doing another will not help you avoid the threat of skin cancer. And even though you’re not out in the sun, UV rays can still penetrate through the windows in your home or office.
I’VE HEARD THAT THE CHEMICALS WE PUT ON OUR SKIN ARE MORE LIKELY TO GIVE US SKIN CANCER THAN TANNING BEDS. IS THIS TRUE?
This isn’t true, but according to Dr. Saunthari, exposure to certain chemicals such as coal tar, asphalt, paraffin wax, and arsenic can actually increase your chances of getting nonmelanoma skin cancer.
WILL SKIN CANCER ONLY AFFECT AREAS OF MY SKIN THAT ARE EXPOSED TO THE SUN, OR CAN IT BE ON PLACES THAT ARE NORMALLY COVERED?
Skin cancer will only normally affect exposed areas. For people with numerous moles on their body, there is an increased risk of melanoma.
IS SKIN CANCER HEREDITARY?
Skin cancers are not hereditary. However, scientists have found certain families who have higher cases of skin cancers as compared to other families. If you have a parent who has had squamous cell skin cancer, you are two to three times more likely of having it yourself. As skin types run in families, fair people have a higher chance of getting skin cancer whereas darker-skinned individuals have a lower chance. You will not inherit skin cancer; you only inherit the genes that would increase the risk of getting it.