6 Ultraviolet Light Myths Debunked

July is National UV Safety Month, and we’re looking at the most common myths about tanning and skin cancer. Melanoma is the most common type of skin cancer. In the last decade, melanoma cases have increased by 53%. Test Smartly Labs hopes to decrease that number by setting the record straight on popular UV misconceptions. 

6 Myths About Skin Cancer and UV Rays

Myth: People with dark skin don’t get skin cancer.

Fact: People with darker skin tones are less likely to get skin cancer, but skin cancer is more likely to be fatal if they are diagnosed. This is because tanned or naturally dark skin can make it more difficult to spot signs of skin cancer.

Myth: Young people can’t get skin cancer.

Fact: The risk of skin cancer increases as you age, but younger patients are being diagnosed with skin cancer due to insufficient protection from the sun. Vigilance now will drastically reduce your risk later. Younger people have less of an understanding of the risks of using tanning beds, which can drastically increase your chances of getting skin cancer.

Myth: Tanning is a great way to get Vitamin D.

Fact: You can get your daily dose of vitamin D just by taking a brief walk in the sun, using sunscreen, of course. You don’t need to tan to get sufficient vitamin D. In fact, many foods like fish, eggs, and dairy products have enough vitamin D to keep you going all day long.

Myth: Tanning beds are safer because they have a controlled dose of UV.

Fact: Ten minutes in a tanning bed can be equivalent to up to 3 hours in the sun, depending on the bed, and the unit can emit both UVA and UVB rays. According to the CDC, people under 35 who ritually tan have a 75% higher risk of melanoma than those who don’t tan regularly or who carefully protect their skin.

Myth: A “base tan” protects from sunburn.

Fact: Any tan or burn is a sign of sun damage. UV rays cause your skin to produce more pigment. A tan may appear to repair damage caused by the sun, but you should get tested if you start to notice dangerous signs of too much sun exposure.

Myth: Clouds can keep you from getting sunburned.

Fact: UVA rays don’t discriminate, and they can do just as much damage on a cloudy day as a sunny one. Cloudy days may actually be more dangerous as you may not realize that your skin is burning.

Protect Yourself with Facts

Celebrate this important awareness month by thoroughly applying (and reapplying) sunscreen every day you’re in the sun. Spread the news and encourage healthy sun habits from your friends and family as well. Share our blog across social media to get the word out about the dangers of sun damage and UV rays.

LOOKING FOR RELIABLE HEALTH AND WELLNESS TESTING? CONTACT TEST SMARTLY LABS OR CALL (816) 800-9699 TODAY TO MAKE AN APPOINTMENT AT ANY OF OUR 5 KC-METRO LOCATIONS!

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