Every year in France, 80,000 new cases of skin cancer are diagnosed. In forty years, this disease has tripled. In most cases, it is the excess exposure to sun which is in question.
” Of course, the sun is the first risk factor. But there are also genetic skin cancers: there are certain families where many are diagnosed. But the sun stays far ahead “, explains the Dr. Alain Toledano, oncologist and president of the Rafael InstituteEuropean center for integrative medicine supporting patients during and after cancer.
The problem is that, like all cancers, skin cancer is multifactorial. ” If two people expose themselves excessively to the sun, some develop cancer and the other does not, without knowing why. “, adds the oncologist.
There are two main types of skin cancer: carcinomas and the melanomas. Carcinomas are the most common skin cancers. They usually occur after the age of 50, on exposed areas of the body (face, neck, shoulders, forearms, legs…) and are most often due to excessive and chronic sun exposure. It is important to protect you from the sun from early childhood : it is often sunburn occurring at a very young age that causes skin cancer in adulthood.
Skin cancer: UVB rays pass through the clouds according to Doctor Toledano
If the sun is mainly involved in the occurrence of skin cancers, it is not necessarily the hottest regions that are most at risk. The health authorities have alerted to the resurgence of cases recorded in Brittany. How to explain it?
” In Brittany, there are more clouds. So, we are not suspicious, we protect ourselves less, we suffer less from the heat. Now, behind the clouds, the sun is sneaky “, explains Dr. Toledano. This is because UVB rays (harmful ultraviolet rays) pass through through THE clouds.
” In this region, there are also phototypes of lighter skin, therefore more at risk of skin cancer.adds the oncologist. We also find this phenomenon in Australia: as in Brittany, the sun tends to be hidden behind the clouds “.
Rest assured, if UV rays pass through the clouds, there is little chance that they will pass through the parasol.
There are three times more skin cancers in the north than in the south
In France, we note that, in addition to Brittany, all northern regions observe a higher number of cases of skin cancer. ” People are three times more affected than in the south. The northern departments are areas where you don’t be suspicious. What explains this phenomenon adds Dr. Toledano.
“ In France, we are also fans of tanning booths », points out Dr. Toledano.
Skin cancer: Dr. Toledano discusses professions at risk
We can never repeat enough protective instructions. They are essential to prevent skin cancer. ” And we’re not just talking about skin cancer. The sun can also promote premature aging of the skin if you are not careful (wrinkles, age spots, etc.) », warns the doctor.
It is therefore recommended toavoid exhibitions between 12 p.m. and 4 p.m., from an early age. Bring a hat and sunscreen on all parts of the body that are uncovered.
Some occupations are more at risk: these are farmers, lifeguards, people who work in construction… These people should favor high protection indices (50 +) “, adds the oncologist.