A recent study has shown that men are more at risk of dying from skin cancer than women. Shockingly, it was revealed that white adolescents and young males were twice as likely to die from cancer than women of the same age.
So, why does skin cancer pose more of a risk for men and what should you know about this deadly disease? Find out everything you need to know below.
Why does skin cancer impact men harder than women?
There are a few reasons why skin cancer may impact men harder than women. A significant issue may be that men have less knowledge of the condition, and they may not take as many precautions.
As men don’t tend to have as much knowledge about skin cancer, they are less likely than women to take preventative measures. There is also the fact that many women’s skincare products and cosmetics come with SPF. Men’s skincare doesn’t typically include additional sun protection.
There are also differences in men’s skin. Men are known to have thicker skin with less fat stored underneath. They also have more elastin and collagen. According to a study carried out in the Netherlands, UV rays have a more intense reaction on men’s skin than they do on women’s skin. Furthermore, there is also some evidence to suggest that women’s skin is better at repairing itself.
These factors combined can greatly increase the risk of skin cancer in men. So, what is skin cancer and what should men do to protect themselves?
What is skin cancer?
Skin cancer, or Melanoma, is caused by the UV rays of the sun. This means it tends to develop more on sun-exposed areas of skin. There are several different types of skin cancer you can develop including:
- Basal cell carcinoma
- Squamous cell carcinoma
Melanoma is considered the more serious type of skin cancer. It develops within the melanin cells and can be detected by watching out for changes in any moles on the skin. Basal cell carcinoma develops in the basal cells, whereas Squamous cell carcinoma develops in the Squamous cells.
If you notice any changes in your skin, it is important to get them checked out as soon as possible. While not all cases of skin cancer can be prevented, there are things you can do to minimise the risks.
Top melanoma prevention tips
The number one way to protect yourself against skin cancer is to use sun protection. The higher the SPF sunscreen you use, the more protection it will give the skin. You should also aim to stay out of the sun during peak times. Mr Smith recommends using SPF 50.
Taking measures to protect the skin from the sun’s UV rays can significantly reduce the risk of skin cancer. Pay attention to your skin and any changes. The earlier skin cancer is detected, the easier it is to treat.
Mr Myles Smith is an advisor for Melanoma UK. If you are concerned about any changes to your skin, call 020 7808 2785 to book a consultation with Mr Myles Smith at the Royal Marsden Hospital.