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Skin Cancer – Melanoma

Posted by on May 9, 2013 in Self Care Tidbits | 0 comments

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When skin cancer occurs in either basal cells or squamous cells, it is usually considered non-melanoma.

These cells may either cover the internal or external surfaces of the body, or are located at the base of the outer layer of the skin.

The majority of non-melanoma skin cancers develop in places like the face, ear, neck, lips and even the back of the hands. They may be fast or slow growing, depending on the type, and rarely spread to other parts of the body.

What is melanoma skin cancer?

Melanoma is very rare. It is when a cancer begins in the Melanocytes, the cells that produce the pigment known as Melanin. Melanin is the protector of the deepest layers of skin.

Most often Melanoma is curable. It does however cause the majority of skin cancer deaths even though it counts for only a small percentage of skin cancer.

About how many people are affected by skin cancer?

The most common form of cancer is skin cancer. It makes up around half of all cancers in the United States. Each year, over one million cases of non-melanoma skin cancer is diagnosed.

What are the warning signs and symptoms of skin cancer?

  • A new growth, or any change on the skin. Look for a change in the size or color of a mole or other darkly pigmented growth or spot.
  • A change in appearance of a bump or nodule such as scaliness, oozing, bleeding.
  • The spread of pigmentation beyond its border. This may be the dark coloring that spreads past the edge of a mole or mark.
  • Sensation, itchiness, tenderness, or pain change.

There is strong and growing evidence at this point in time. This evidence is challenging a fundamental belief that people need to lather themselves with sunscreen when in the sun.

Using sunscreen may lead to more medical treatments and cancer deaths than not doing it.

Vitamin D
is nicknamed the sunshine vitamin. This is because the skin produces it from ultraviolet rays. Sunscreen actually blocks the production of this. However, dermatologists preach that this is needed for protection when in the sun. Scientists are now questioning this advice because vitamin D seems so important in preventing and treating many types of cancer.

Within the last three months, studies have found that it may help protect against lymphoma and cancers of the prostate, lung and even the skin. The strongest evidence suggested protection for colon cancer.

Getting vitamin D is hard to do. Supplements are a problem and people can’t just get it from food and milk alone.

The thought behind the discussion is too little sun may be worse than the overexposure to the sun which may cause a rarely deadly cancer.

Scientists now believe that “safe sun”, about 20-40 minutes daily without sunscreen is more helpful than hurtful. No one however, is suggesting to fry in the sun daily.

Research suggests that for every one death caused by sun caused skin cancer, thirty can be prevented by using sunshine vitamin D.

Some of the best foods in helping to prevent skin cancer are carrots, yams, dandelion greens, kale, parsley, turnip greens, spinach, collard greens, chard and broccoli.

Nuts and beans are also a help in prevention.

In helping to aid in clearing skin patches and lesions, use fresh lemon juice. Use it 5 – 6 times daily directly on the spot of the skin. Don’t forget to get “safe sunshine” as well.

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