Is tanning dangerous even if it doesn’t return? The expert will tell you what kind of skin changes to worry about


The sun lifts the mood, but also ages the skin and exposes it to cellular changes. Therefore, good protection should be taken seriously.

What kind of sunscreen should you choose?

The cream must have UVB and UVA protection and usually at least a protection factor of 30. Water resistance is also important during a sun or beach holiday.

The combination of chemical and physical filters usually makes the protection factor sufficiently high. Physical or mineral protectors are recommended for young children. They remain on the surface of the skin, reflecting the rays away.

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Is there any harm from the protective cream?

You may be allergic to the ingredients in sunscreens, but contact allergies are rare.

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Some chemical UV filters have been shown to be absorbed through the skin into the body and are suspected to affect hormonal function. Based on research data and expert assessments to date, for example, the effect of estrogen is small when compared to, for example, the amount of natural phytoestrogens obtained from food.

Is burning the only danger?

Sun exposure accumulated on the skin throughout life is harmful. It, along with burning, can age the skin, can cause skin cancers and their precursors.

Burning of the skin often, especially as a child, increases the risk of melanoma. Lifetime UV exposure increases the risk of squamous cell carcinoma, its precursors, and basal cell carcinomas. Burning the skin as a child also increases the risk of basal cell carcinomas.

Should the skin be monitored?

Both the eyelids and the skin should be monitored every few months if there are many eyelids, a family history of skin cancers, skin cancer, frequent burns, or a lot of sun exposure.

Only 20-30 percent of melanoma occurs in previous creations, other skin cancers hardly occur at all.

What skin changes are there to worry about?

Worrying features of the eyelids include an asymmetrical shape or color, inaccurate boundaries, black or variable color, a diameter of more than 6 millimeters, and eyelid growth or change.

Atypical melanoma is pigment-free and therefore reddish. Reddish rough spots can be solar keratosis, or precursors of squamous cell carcinoma. The skin may have a rash-looking spot that does not disappear with cortisone cream. Surface skin cancers, or Morbus Bowens, are thicker changes than before or can be, for example, horns.

The actual squamous cell carcinomas are already tumor-like. They often grow rapidly, perhaps sore and can be ulcerated.

Are dark spots dangerous?

Solar lentigo spots that appear on areas exposed to the sun over time, such as the face, are most often harmless. However, if the color of the spot is uneven or darkens, it may be melanoma or lentigo maligna inside the epidermis.

If the spot grows or changes, it is a good idea to show it to your doctor so that a test piece can be taken if necessary.

Can I sunbathe if my skin has been diagnosed with solar keratosis or cancer?

Of course, as long as you protect yourself from radiation and follow your skin as directed by your doctor.

The expert is Liisa-Lotta Kiiski, Specialist in Dermatology and Allergology, Skin Hospital.

This article has appeared in Good Health magazine. As a subscriber, you can read all numbers free of charge from the digilehdet.fi service.


Source: Hyvä Terveys by www.hyvaterveys.fi.

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