Why I no longer fear skin cancer

Why I no longer fear skin cancer

I was diagnosed with skin cancer ten years ago: Melanoma. Luckily it was a stage 1 and was successfully removed. Since that date all my check-ups have come out clear. Nevertheless, I have to be watchful. Once you’ve had melanoma, the chances of a recurrence is pretty high. But after reading extensively about melanoma, I have finally given up worrying about it.

I gave up worrying about melanoma simply because there are so many conflicting studies and reports. If you are overly sensitive you will become so confused and fearful you won’t want to leave the house. Some reports claim that sun exposure is the number one cause of melanoma, however, people who never expose themselves to the sun may get it too. Also it may come up in the most unexpected places like the anus, vaginal tract. Surprise! Those places are also hidden from the sun.

Prevention is also pretty fuzz. While it’s true that creams with SPF and broad spectrum can help, anything over 50% SPF is a waste because it doesn’t actually protect more. All these numbers are also very confusing as pointed out in an article in The New York Times. Another study by Stanford Medicine says that taking aspirin daily reduces the risk of melanoma in women. So there you have it.

Also read: Living with Eczema, my story

Why I no longer fear skin cancer

So, in the midst of all this, all we can do is our best without obsessing. In a world in which everything seems to cause cancer or some other ailment, we have to come to terms with the fact that it’s all about common sense. We have to live a little and make reasonable choices on how far we’re willing to go to protect ourselves. If you go too far and don’t let the sun touch your skin, you’ll be on the road to vitamin D deficiency. And while there are supplements, as NPR mentioned in a recent segment: Vitamin supplements may cause more harm than good. The body wants the real thing and is prepared to absorb what it’s meant to absorb, not some synthetic mishmash in a pill.

The best thing we can do is find a happy “worry” medium. I can’t live in fear. Io what I can to prevent and protect myself and use common sense. I’m also proactive.

I don’t worry about melanoma because I’m using new new products to help me with prevention.

Summer beach and pool protection for face and body

If I’m going to spend time on a surfboard or playing at the beach, I will wear a rash guard with SPF of 50 like the ones Clinique and Parasol have come out with. No longer are these shirts bland and ugly like they used to. They’re fun, cute and comfortable. I always fall for cute!

There are many creams out there that offer protection, you just have to find one that really works for you. Make sure you are not allergic to it, as the zinc may make your eyes cry and itch. No cream is created equal. I like Clinique’s Broad Spectrum SPF 13 Sunscreen for the face when I am wearing no make up. Any other cream from their line works too. They’re not greasy and easy to apply. You won’t be walking around with white streaks of cream. Some of them stick like glue and are hard to wash off.

Let’s simplify. It’s a good idea to get a two in one foundation. Using too much layered stuff on your face will clog your pores. I like Bobbi Brown’s NEW Intensive Skin Serum Foundation SPF 40. It’s silky, smooth, light, and has enough coverage to hide imperfections. It doesn’t smell weird like many SPF products do, and I have not had problems with any eye itch or irritation.

So please, do enjoy some sun. This is the best way to boost vitamin D and lighten your mood. I don’t mean you should go exposing yourself for hours, just 15 minutes a day in the sun is enough for your body to absorb all the goodies if offers.

What are your prevention techniques and products?

Disclosure: I received samples of the products mentioned in the post but I am a lifetime user of these brands.

Laura Carbonell

Laura Carbonell is a bilingual and bicultural language teacher in San Francisco, the place she calls home. Born into a family of writers, she enjoys sharing her vision of empowerment and motivation online. She blogs at Onlifeandhope.com