Scary me……….

Recently I went to the dermatologist for my annual checkup. Of course having been a sun worshipper for many years before all the skin cancer warning we hear today, I knew I had sun damage to some degree. I know way too many people who have suffered from skin cancer complications…meaning it had affected other parts of their bodies. One person I know died at the age of 40 from skin cancer, the others had a variety of things removed. I make it a point now to get checked.

My dermatologist put me in a room and with that attractive white paper smock on, I sat in the room freezing to death waiting for him to come in. A portly man in his late 70’s entered wearing small goggle type glasses for better viewing of my skin. He stopped when we got to several moles (that I thought were harmful freckles) on my back, and turned out to be pre-cancerous moles. He said after pausing as he stared that they seemed ok for now but just as a precaution he wanted to remove them. No complaints here, I was thrilled he found them. The doctor then proceeded to turn off the light and handed me a mirror. He he then had what a appeared to be a black light and shone it on my face and had me look in the mirror…YIKES!!!!! I just about screamed, the person looking back at me looked nothing like me, but a bluish zombie with such horrible dark purple spots all over their face. The eyeballs of this person in the mirror were glowing white. What a scary sight I was! The doctor explained to me that the damage I was looking at was the sun damage that appeared UNDER my skin. The damage done by the UVB rays of the sun. My skin had been terrorized all these years by that glowing ball of fire in the sky and I did not even know it. I thought my complexion was just a out flawless, little did I know what lurked beneath!

The sun is very harmful for our bodies, mainly our skin. Although looking tanned is a nice idea, the sun will cause our skin to dry out, and become wrinkled as we age. It soaks up all the water content in our skin causing the skins surface to burn. Using baby oil only increases the damage we do to our skin. Protecting your skin with a high SPF in sunscreen is the key to keeping your body healthy and having your skin look younger longer.

Recently I discovered how to tell how much protection sunscreen gives us before we have to reapply it. You take the spf number, for example 30 and multiply that by 10, which gives us 300. The 300 is 300 minutes in the sun before we must reapply the sunscreen on our bodies. Just because a sunscreen says it is water proof or water resistant does not mean that we do not have to reapply the sunscreen, we most certainly do! So be smart and stay healthy and younger looking, apply sunscreen and dont leave home without it!

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