Oct 08 2010
Age spots are a concern if they affect the looks of an individual, depressing his or her self confidence. Another issue about age spots is its alleged progression to cancer. But before jumping into conclusions, you have to know some basic things about age spots and skin cancer, and see how they are related to each other.
Age spots, also called sun spots are prevalent when one ages. They usually appear on skin areas which get the most solar exposure, namely the hands and the facial area. It can be concluded that aging is not only the factor when it comes to developing age spots. Damaged melanocytes are what causes age spots.
Skin cancer however is not only caused by sunlight. There is smoking tobacco, exposure to caustic chemicals like arsenic. Heredity is another factor. The three most common types of skin cancer are classified according to the skin cells they affect. These skin cancers are called squamous cell carcinoma, basal cell carcinoma and melanoma. There are other types of skin cancers, but the three mentioned earlier are the most common forms.
Now, can a simple age spot develop to cancer? The answer is still uncertain, but since both age spots and skin cancer have a common factor, which is excessive exposure to the sun’s harmful rays, there could be a chance. It could be probable if age spots are ignored and they become worse because of ignorance.
The risk of dying from skin cancer is little because it can be detected early. Wounds that do not heal, skin lacerations which change in color and size and moles with irregular shapes are the indicators of skin cancer. A mole which just appeared and is asymmetrical should be of great concern. Age spots obscure the discovery of melanoma so it became associated with it.
So what can you do to prevent skin cancer, and avoiding age spots from obscuring melanoma? First, you have to limit your sun exposure. The heat of the sun is at its peak during noontime, so try not to go out during those times. Having age spots gone can also lower your risks. Also wear sunscreens when you have to go out under the heat of the sun. Bringing an umbrella is a wise decision. You can prevent skin cancer if you do something about it.
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