My better half thought I had some spots a dermatologist should check out. The Dr. found what he called a pre-cancerous spot on my cheek and froze it with liquid nitrogen. I’m not sure it was necessary, but he’s the expert. He also scooped out a spot on my scalp. I feel like I’m going to pieces.
I did learn something important. I used to wear SPF 8 suntan lotion, figuring that would be 8 times better than nothing. However, the Dr. told me that low SPF suntan lotion only protects us from the UVA rays, letting the UVB rays through. It’s the UVB rays which cause skin cancer, so by putting on lotion which kept me from burning, I actually may have spent more time in the sun letting the UVB rays do their damage.
Update: I went online and am now thoroughly confused. It appears my understanding of UVA and UVB is reversed. It’s unlikely the Dr. gave me incorrect information. What’s more likely is I had a difficult time listening while being scalped and froze. I’ve always heard someone besides the patient needs to be there to listen. It is very difficult for the patient to listen.
There seems to be some debate about all sunscreen. Some of the ingredients may be carcinogenic and in this sunscreen photo it appears that more ultraviolet light is absorbed by the skin when sunscreen is used. I don’t know what to think. Readers, weigh in with your comments.
Looking at the photo above, I see my skin has aged. I don’t feel terribly old, approaching 45 years, but I realize I’ve probably spent many more hours in the summer sun than almost anyone reading this. I plan on continuing to wear long-sleeves and pants and a broad-brimmed hat which I’ve been doing for the past fifteen years. I’ll probably put SPF 30 sunscreen on my face when I’m doing tractor-work, sitting in the summer sun.