Written by Poonam Shah
With a heatwave hitting all over the globe, this summer has been a real scorcher. Many places have hit record highs.
Despite the heat, my family loves the summer. It’s a time to enjoy some sun and cool off in the pool or at the beach.
Like most moms, I am always nagging the kids to protect their skin. And like most kids, they need several reminders to grab their hats, sunglasses and put on sunscreen. They often chose to ignore the many lectures I gave them on the importance of sun protection. This year, however – it hit home. Skin cancer can be dangerous. Our good friend John got diagnosed with melanoma, a form of skin cancer. Undetected, it had spread from under his arm into arm his muscles. He was in shock. Watching him suffer through multiple treatments, surgeries and chemotherapy have been an eye opener for all of us. Eventually, cancer spread into his blood and it became fatal.
When left undetected, skin cancer can become life threatening.
On another note: did you know that you can get skin cancer on the scalp? Just like our skin, we also need to protect our scalp. A few years ago, another friend discovered that she had skin cancer on her scalp. The only possible treatment was to surgically remove it. Luckily, it was detected at an early stage and had not yet spread beyond the scalp. If all it meant was that she had to deal with the loss of hair for a while, she felt that was a blessing. Ever since that experience, she has been very careful with her skin. She always wears sunscreen and covers her head with a hat or a scarf to protect her scalp from UV rays. She has been cancer free for 5 years now and highly recommends regular checkups, and protecting your skin and scalp at all times!
Per skincancer.org, “Sun protection is essential to skin cancer prevention – about 90 percent of non-melanoma skin cancers and about 86 percent of melanomas are associated with exposure to UV radiation from the sun!”
This is UV awareness month. Spread the word and enjoy the sun safely this summer. For a list of recommended supplements and sunscreens, check out our Sunday Supplement Blog!
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