During the summertime, it’s common people have an interest in embracing the sun’s warmth and light. However, too much sun exposure is bad on the skin.
The sun’s heat can dry areas of unprotected skin and deplete the skin’s supply of natural lubricating oils. The sun’s ultraviolet (UV) radiation can cause burning and long-term changes in the skin’s structure, such as sunburns or skin cancer.
White And Light Skin People Suffer The Most
According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on sunburn and sun protective behaviors among adults aged 18 to 29, from 2000 to 2010, people of lighter skin are prone to sun’s negative effects.
About 66 percent of white women and more than 65 percent of white men have experience sunburns at least once a year. More than 38 percent of Hispanic women and 32 percent of Hispanic men have suffered from sun damage in the same span.
Natural Advantages Being Black
In the same CDC survey, 13 percent of Black women and nine percent of men have experienced sunburns.
Thanks to the melanin in their skin, people with darker skin complexion are less likely to experience sunburn. Melanin is a skin pigment produced by skin cells called melanocytes. It blocks the harmful effects of UV rays.
Black People Can Get Skin Cancer Too
Darker-skinned people can still get skin cancer like a white and light-skinned people. Despite having a lower chance of getting skin cancer, it’s more consequences for a Black person to get it. According to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), Black people are more likely to find out whether they’ve got cancer at a regional stage and have greater restrictions to healthcare services.
The darker skin, the more protection from the sun one has. However, just because one is darker doesn’t mean they’re completely protected from the sun. But melanin isn’t immune to all UV rays, so there are some risks.
What’s The Solution?
Use sunscreens that have a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of at least 30.
For Black people, it would be recommended to consume products that provide vitamin D because melanin also prevents them from getting the necessary amount of it.
Vitamin D, which can be consumed through sunshine, can help strengthen bones and helps the body absorb calcium better. Vitamin D also fights against chronic dieses in the family, which as diabetes, heart diseases, cancer, and arthritis.