Skin cancer is a serious issue, especially in Utah. The rate of melanoma in Utah has doubled in the past 17 years, making it the highest in the nation. Even if you take measures to protect yourself from harmful ultraviolet or UV radiation by applying sunscreen or wearing protective clothing, the sun can still get to you when you’re least expecting it.
Sun Safety in Utah
In Salt Lake City, residents are exposed to 24 to 28 percent higher concentrations of UV. Park City residents experience 42 to 50 percent more of it. Sunscreen is a sure way to protect your self — if only the men can be persuaded to use them.
The rate of men with melanoma in Utah has almost doubled compared to women (54.3 in 100,000 for men and 32.3 in 100,000 for women). Researchers link this disparity to workplace locations and frequency of going outdoors, but sunscreen use, or lack of it, is also a big factor. Women are more likely to use sunscreen, and men usually take the sun for granted.
Staying Indoors is No Guarantee of Safety
Applying sunscreen when going outside can protect you from the harmful effects of UV, but rarely would you apply sunscreen while indoors. Whether you’re at home or work, residential or commercial windows barely provide UV protection. Glass is no protection from UV unless it is specially made or treated to provide protection. Keep that in mind if you plan to replace residential windows in Salt Lake City.
You can have your existing house’s glass windows and doors treated with a UV filtering film. UV film can be as transparent as you want, so don’t worry about it changing the look of your house. You can also put up drapes or blinds, which you can use to control the amount of light that comes into your home.
Windows at the office are bigger problems. If you have your own office, you can ask the building management to install a protective film, or you can do so yourself. Try to position yourself away from the sun. Move workstations, or again, request for UV filtering films to promote workplace safety.
That Drive to Work Can Be Deadly
Being inside your car gives you the feeling of being indoors, at least when it comes to sun protection. However, your car merely provides sun protection, leaving parts of your body exposed to UV.
Researchers in the US have discovered a correlation between the increased instances of melanoma on the left side of the body and driving. Their findings have been strengthened by research in the UK that had similar results — but on the right side of the body. While your windshield provides some UV protection, your car windows do not. Head to the shop and have your car treated with UV films to protect your whole body from UV. Chronic UV exposure can have serious repercussions, especially if you’re not aware of it. Make sure to protect yourself and your family from the sun — even when you’re staying indoors.