This Part of Your Body Is Highly Susceptible to Skin Cancer

This Part of Your Body Is Highly Susceptible to Skin Cancer

Take a guess: you know we treat a lot of Nashville patients with skin cancer, but do you know where it’s found the most? On the left side of your face. Scratching your head? Good! That means you’re not sure how that area of skin is targeted - and we’re here to fill you in.

As you know, there are many different types of sun rays, and even though summer is over, they are still able to penetrate your skin no matter where you are… Especially if you are in your car. Most people aren’t aware of this, but the sun’s longer rays are are able to easily penetrate your windows, even on cloudy days! That’s why we end up treating a lot of Nashville truck drivers with left-sided skin cancer.

As recent studies have shown, tinted windows designed to block visible light may or may not have a UVA blocker, and front windows actually do a better job of blocking UVA. However, even if side windows aren’t tinted, research has shown that UVA protection was lower and highly variable. As a result, this could explain the increased rates of cataracts in left eyes, and left-sided facial skin cancer. For people in Nashville who spend a lot of time driving and patients like our truck drivers, this is vital information to be aware of.

So the questions remains - how can you prevent yourself from falling victim to left-sided facial skin cancer? You have a couple of options:

Apply a zinc-based sunscreen

This is my number one priority with patients - a zinc-based facial sunscreen is highly effective at blocking all harmful UVA/UVB rays. Regardless of what you’re doing, you must do this everyday. Think of it the same way as brushing your teeth - if you absolutely have to do that on a daily basis, why not take care of your face and prevent skin cancer as well?

Shop my recommended facial sunscreens here

Invest in a clear UVA tint for your car

By installing a clear UVA tint in your side windows, you are effectively protecting your skin and also ensuring that Nashville highway patrol officers are not placed at risk as a result of dark-tinted windows. Instead, a UVA blocker is clear, and a regular window glass blocks UVB.

The approximate cost of putting clear UVA tint into side windows is $295 for all four side windows in a four-door sedan and $275 for the front side windows (two) at a local auto glass company in Jackson, MS. This is but a small amount to pay for protection in patients with lupus erythematosus, drug-induced photosensitivity in patients who are not able to eliminate the offending drug, polymorphous light eruption, and other UVA-sensitive photosensitizing disorders.

Want to learn more about how to prevent onset of skin cancer? Visit us at Skin Solutions Dermatology in Nashville, Franklin, Columbia, Smyrna, Hendersonville or Pulaski to chat with our amazing team of dermatology specialists! Take advantage of our online booking system and book an appointment today.

Source: JAMA Opthalmology

Related Buzz: These Harmful Rays Could Be Damaging Your Skin, How Well Do You Know Your UV Rays?

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Dr Pena

About The Author

Dr. Pena is a Board-Certified Medical Dermatologist, Mohs skin cancer surgeon, and cosmetic dermatologist. Her mission is to educate the diverse patient populations she serves, and their communities, on the importance of skin care in decreasing the risk of skin cancer and minimizing the early signs of aging. She founded Skin Solutions Dermatology with numerous clinics in Nashville, Tennessee and surrounding Middle Tennessee.

Dr. Julia Pena, MD