Posts for: April, 2020
With the warmer months just around the corner you may be getting ready to plan some fun in the sun. The summertime always finds children spending hours outside playing, as well as beach-filled family vacations, backyard barbeques, and more days just spent soaking up some much-needed vitamin D.
While it can certainly be great for our emotional and mental well-being to go outside, it’s also important that we are protecting our skin against the harmful effects of the sun’s rays. These are some habits to follow all year long to protect against skin cancer,
Wear Sunscreen Daily
Just because the sun isn’t shining doesn’t mean that your skin isn’t being exposed to the harmful UVA and UVB rays. The sun’s rays have the ability to penetrate through clouds. So it’s important that you generously apply sunscreen to the body and face about 30 minutes before going outside.
Opt for a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 that also protects against both UVA and UVB rays. Everyone should use sunscreen, even infants. Just one sunburn during your lifetime can greatly increase your risk for developing skin cancer, so always remember to lather up!
Reapply Sunscreen Often
If you are planning to be outdoors for a few hours you’ll want to bring your sunscreen with you. After all, one application won’t be enough to protect you all day long. A good rule of the thumb to follow is, reapply sunscreen every two hours. Of course, you’ll also want to apply sunscreen even sooner if you’ve just spent time swimming or if you’ve been sweating a lot (e.g. running a race or playing outdoor sports).
Seek Shade During the Day
While feeling the warm rays of the sun on your shoulders can certainly feel nice, the sun’s rays are at their most powerful and most dangerous during the hours of 10am-4pm. If you plan to be outdoors during these times it’s best to seek shady spots. This means enjoying lunch outside while under a wide awning or sitting on the beach under an umbrella. Even these simple measures can reduce your risk for skin cancer.
See a Dermatologist
Regardless of whether you are fair skinned, have a family history of skin cancer or you don’t have any risk factors, it’s important that everyone visit their dermatologist at least once a year for a comprehensive skin cancer screening. This physical examination will allow our skin doctor to be able to examine every growth and mole from head to toe to look for any early signs of cancer. These screenings can help us catch skin cancer early on when it’s treatable.
Noticing changes in one of your moles? Need to schedule your next annual skin cancer screening? If so, a dermatologist will be able to provide you with the proper care you need to prevent, diagnose and treat both melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancers.
You’re hearing the term “social distancing” everywhere now. You know that it’s designed to keep yourself and others healthy and to reduce the spread of coronavirus, but perhaps you’re not exactly sure what social distancing actually entails. From the office of our Peoria, AZ, dermatologist, Dr. Vernon Mackey, here are some social distancing tips designed to keep you healthy and safe during the pandemic.
What is Social Distancing?
Many people are using the terms “isolation”, “quarantine” or “social distancing” interchangeably but they mean something a bit different. Isolation and quarantine are designed to prevent people who are sick or are believed to be infected from being able to come in contact with others. These people may be under self-quarantine or may be confined to a hospital. People with weaken immune systems may also choose to self-quarantine in order to protect themselves from being exposed to the virus.However, social distancing is what the rest of the currently uninfected community should be practicing. Social distancing means avoiding gatherings and public spaces where there are more than 10 people at a time.
Here’s what you should know about social distancing,
- You can still go out to get groceries, medications, and other things you need to live; however, it’s best to minimize how much time you spend in public, so only go out when it’s absolutely essential.
- When you’re out in public (e.g. grocery store) make sure to keep at least six feet between you and others.
- Cancel or postpone events, parties, weddings, and other mass gatherings for the foreseeable future.
- If you’re sick, it’s important that you stay home
- Wash your hands frequently and properly
- If you are over 65 years old or if you have chronic health problems (e.g. diabetes), it’s best to stay home as much as possible, wear a mask if you have to be in public, and have neighbors/family members pick up prescriptions or groceries for you.
Make Social Distancing Easier
We know that canceling plans and having to stay indoors most of the day may feel a little strange at first. But there are ways to make social distancing easier, productive, and perhaps even fun:
- Been wanting to work out? Now is the perfect time to start! There are tons of trainers, fitness classes, and programs that are providing people with both free and paid classes online. Make your apartment or house your very own gym.
- There are also tons of chefs that are offering up tips, recipes and cooking courses right now. Choosing a recipe that the family can make together could be a fun at-home bonding experience in the evenings.
- Still working from home? Designate a bonafide workspace and set your hours each day so you aren’t tempted to get up and do laundry or clean the house instead. Once your set hours are over, then you can kick back and relax or tackle those chores. Make the most of your day even when working from home!