Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer, it happens when malignant cells are found in the outer layer of skin. The incidence of skin cancer is affected by many factors such as family history, skin color, sun exposure, and tanning. In the following part we will illustrate some of the major points you should know about skin cancer:
• Skin Color: Many people think that darker-skinned people are not vulnerable to get skin color. This belief is totally wrong, everyone can get skin cancer as skin cancers are associated with ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun, but people of color have a lower incidence of skin cancer because of the greater amounts of melanin darker skin produces. However, they can still get skin cancer from UV damage. On the other hand, people with light skin, light eyes and light hair have less of the sun-protective pigment, melanin so they are more susceptible to sunburns.
• Family History of Skin Color: Most non-melanoma skin cancers do not run in families. But few families have found by research programs to have a higher number than normal. If your parent has had squamous cell skin cancer, so you have 2 to 3 times higher than average risk of getting one yourself. While, if one have a family history of melanoma, your chances of getting it are higher.
• Suntans: UV rays fry the inner layers of your skin, causing your body to release more melanin pigment to darken the outer layers as a protective measure. Tans lead to wrinkles, however, and they don’t protect against skin cancer. Keep away from tanning salons as they are not safe and can cause skin cancer. U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has considered UV radiation from the sun, tanning beds and sun lamps as some of the skin cancer causes. Since sunburn is linked to skin cancer, moderate tanning may also lead to the same result.
• Moles: Half of the melanomas develop in pre-existing moles. There are two types of moles: the small brown spots or growth with regular shape and atypical moles. Atypical moles commonly appear as an asymmetrical, irregularly bordered, multicolored or tan/brown spot or growth that his size gets larger over time. People who have 10 or more atypical moles have 12 times the risk of getting melanoma as the general population.