It’s so hot! Do you ever notice how warmer it is today compared when you were young? Well, that is because of climate change. The earth’s temperature increased and as predicted, it will rise more over the next hundred years if we don’t do anything about it. Humans are mostly to blame for global warming due to activities that contribute to the greenhouse gasses emission-this is one of the many reasons why there is a thinning of the earth’s ozone layer-which protects us from the sun’s extreme heat and harmful rays. A little increase in earth’s temperature can bring devastating effects not only to the environment but also to our health.
Skin: Our Primary Defense
The skin is our primary defense. It acts a wall-like barrier from environment hazards like infection and ultraviolet rays. Through the help of melanin- dark pigmentation of the skin, it is like “sunshades”, which blocks the most damaging wavelength of the ultraviolet light to penetrate the skin. Why do we need to protect our skin if it is our primary defense for such? Well, the skin cannot protect our internal bodies further due to climate change. The extreme UV rays are too much for the skin to handle, additional protection is needed. But prior to that let me enumerate the harmful effects of too much sun.
Effects of Climate Change (Extreme Exposure to the UV Rays) to the Skin
It is an acute reaction to excessive exposure to sun-results in edema, painful blisters, and after few days peeling, moreover, the UV rays contributes to 15 % to 20% to the sunburn reaction.
Tanning is socially desirable effect of exposure to the sunlight. Tanning is also known as melanin pigmentation, a facultative type which is reversible after few days. Bur there is also known as Delayed Tanning, which becomes noticeable only after 1-2 days after exposure and may persist for few weeks or even months. Immediate Tanning on the other hand appears 5-10 minutes from exposure and normally fades after 1-2 hours.
There are also spray tan options available which don’t involve any harmful UV rays. Many tanning salons are switching to spray tans because in some places, it is illegal for people under 18 to go to traditional tanning salons. Many salons are now receiving spray tan training to increase their target market.
Prolonged exposure or regular exposure to the sun may cause skin dryness, deep wrinkles, decrease elasticity, accentuated skin furrows, and spot pigmentation.
The most common kind of cancer, according to a study 1% loss of total ozone layer leads to 3%-5% increase in skin cancer cases. Just imagine how much risk we are facing with the rate of the ozone layer thinning.
Apply Sunscreen Now!
Stop! Before you go out there, apply on some sunscreen. These are products that act as sun proof to protect the skin. Everyone above six months of age should regularly use sunscreen, even when it’s cloudy outside; there is still the 40% of UV rays exposure. Choose sunscreen with SPF-Sun Protection Factor of 15 or more. SPF is the ability to protect the skin from damage caused by the Ultraviolet rays and right now, we need a lot of that due to global warming or climate change. Moreover, before worst comes to worst, let us all do our part to prevent further climate change.