Dr. Joel Schlessinger discusses study that found indoor tanning causes more cancer than smoking

Friday, February 7th, 2014

Dr. Joel Schlessinger discusses the study that found indoor tanning causes more cancer than smoking It’s no secret that indoor tanning is dangerous. To see just how harmful tanning beds can be, researchers recently compared prolonged UV exposure with other negative habits. The study results suggest that indoor tanning may result in more cases of cancer than smoking alone.

Tanning beds are often linked to skin cancer, Dr. Joel Schlessinger explains.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger strongly urges his patients to avoid indoor tanning. The UV lamps in tanning beds give off 10 to 15 times more radiation than the sun, which puts users at an even higher risk of developing melanoma.

The study included research that showed how common indoor tanning is among adults and teenagers. Out of the 500,000 people who participated, nearly 36 percent of the adults and 20 percent of the teenagers admitted to using a tanning bed.

Researchers also examined cancer rates and found that the number of skin cancer cases outweigh the number of lung cancer cases each year. While smoking causes around 363,000 cases of lung cancer annually, there are an estimated 419,000 cases of basal and squamous cell carcinomas. Additionally, there are around 11,000 cases of melanoma that could be linked to the use of tanning beds.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger is passionate about proper sun protection.

As a board certified dermatologist and cosmetic surgeon, Dr. Joel Schlessinger is a strong advocate for practicing healthy skin care. He supports the ban of tanning beds for all minors in hopes that it will save future generations from melanoma and other skin cancers.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger also recommends wearing sunscreen every day, even if you aren’t exposed to direct sunlight. He is especially supportive of the use of sunscreen in schools, where many administrators have banned the use of sun protection for children.  Dr. Joel Schlessinger appeared on the Huffington Post last year to discuss the implications of this ban.

Do you have questions about healthy skin care for Dr. Joel Schlessinger? Share with us in the comments.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger weighs in on the link between alcohol and skin cancer

Wednesday, January 29th, 2014

Dr. Joel Schlessinger weighs in on the link between alcohol and skin cancerAccording to a recent study, there may be a connection between drinking alcohol and skin cancer. The British Journal of Dermatology found that drinking too much alcohol could set off a chain reaction that makes the skin more sensitive to UV light that can cause skin cancer.

The study looked at 16 different case studies involving thousands of participants. These studies found that drinking one alcoholic beverage or more per day increases the risk of skin cancer by a fifth.

How does alcohol increase skin cancer risk? Dr. Joel Schlessinger shares.

A number of forces may be to blame causing the link between alcohol and skin cancer. Ethanol is converted to acetaldehyde soon after ingestion, and acetaldehyde can render the skin more sensitive to UV light. Sunscreen negligence and not wearing enough protective clothing while drinking may also be to blame.

“The interesting question will be whether it is because protection and the awareness of sun protection is flawed while ‘sunning under the influence’ or whether there is a particular worsening of sun exposure when drinking,” says Dr. Joel Schlessinger.

“We have many drugs and foods that intensify sun exposure when ingested, so it isn’t a stretch to think alcohol could do the same thing.”

Dr. Joel Schlessinger is not surprised by the findings of this study.

Although this is a new study, Dr. Joel Schlessinger isn’t surprised by the findings.

“It is tough enough to encourage patients to stay out of the sun,” says Dr. Joel Schlessinger, “so it comes as no shock that when drinking, sun protection habits go out the window.”

Dr. Joel Schlessinger always recommends wearing a broad spectrum sunscreen every day, especially when you plan to be in the sun. Wear protective clothing, such as long sleeves, a wide-brimmed hat, and sunglasses. For extra protection, try an antioxidant supplement such as Heliocare Sun Protection Capsules.

But at the end of the day, Dr. Joel Schlessinger recommends avoiding drinking alcohol and spending time in the sun.

“The take home message is that it is unsafe to be in the sun and drink at the same time.”

Do you ever drink alcohol while you are in the sun? What precautions do you take? Share with us in the comments or on Facebook and Twitter.

Joel Schlessinger MD shares an article on protecting yourself against the desert heat

Friday, July 26th, 2013

Joel Schlessinger MD shares an article on protecting yourself against the desert heat

How do you protect yourself in a harsh desert climate? Joel Schlessinger MD shares.

In the United States, summer climates range from mild to blazing. In areas such as the Southwest, temperatures and direct sun exposure lead to an increase in the number of skin cancer cases. An article from the Las Vegas Review Journal highlights the dangers facing those who live in warm climates as well as how to combat this risk.

Along with tips for finding the best sunscreen and how to properly apply it, this article highlights other tricks for protecting yourself this summer.

Certain individuals may be at more a risk than others, explains Joel Schlessinger MD.

While everyone should be worried about sun protection, research suggests that older individuals as well as young children may be the most at risk groups. Young children tend to have delicate skin that can be more prone to damage. This group is also likely to spend the most amount of time outdoors, especially in places with warm climates. As we age, our skin becomes thinner, making us more susceptible to UV damage.

To reduce the risks of overexposure, dermatologists recommend daily sunscreen use along with lightweight clothing and hats. People should also seek shade during the peak hours of the day when UV rays are the strongest.

According to dermatologists such as Joel Schlessinger MD, many people forget to protect their eyes.

The eyes are an area that many people do not think about when applying sun protection products. Both the area surrounding the eyes and the eye itself are susceptible to damage. UV rays can contribute to cataracts, growths and other health issues including skin cancer. One of the easiest ways to protect the eyes is by wearing sunglasses. Many styles filter UV rays to prevent damage.

Questions or comments for Joel Schlessinger MD about sun protection? Let him know in the comment section.

On average, people don’t put on enough sunscreen. Joel Schlessinger MD explains.

Wednesday, July 24th, 2013

On average, people don't put on enough sunscreen. Joel Schlessinger MD explains.

Even with new label requirements setting a higher standard for manufacturers, the majority continue to make the same mistakes when applying sunscreen. A recent article in MedPage Today titled “Sunscreen: New Labels, Same Problems” details how the labeling mandates have helped, but the two most common problems remain: not putting on enough sunscreen and not reapplying frequently enough. Joel Schlessinger MD warns his patients of the importance of proper sunscreen application and reapplication.

Joel Schlessinger MD discusses the proper amount of sunscreen required for optimal protection.

You need a generous amount of sunscreen to completely cover and protect your skin. Joel Schlessinger MD recommends his patients apply a full ounce, or the equivalent of a full shot glass, to protect the whole body. Sunscreen needs to be applied at least 30 minutes before sun exposure. Joel Schlessinger MD says it is also important to reapply at least every two hours, and even more often if swimming or sweating.

Sunscreen is an important part of your daily routine, says Joel Schlessinger MD.

When you’re spending time in the sun, don’t forget to protect your ears, the part in your hair and any bald spots on your head. These places are easily burned and often forgotten when applying sunscreen. Sun protection is also important even when you’re not in direct sunlight. Car windows block UVB rays, but not UVA rays, which can cause premature aging and significant sun damage.

Joel Schlessinger MD recommends sun protection clothing for another layer of UV defense. Look for clothing with an ultraviolet protection factor (UPF), a rating that measures UV protection provided by fabric. Wearing a hat can also protect your scalp, face and neck from direct sun exposure.

Do you have a sunscreen question for Joel Schlessinger MD? Share with us in the comments.

Joel Schlessinger MD shares an article debunking popular myths about sunscreen

Friday, June 28th, 2013

Joel Schlessinger MD shares an article debunking popular myths about sunscreen

Dermatologists such as Joel Schlessinger MD strive to refute myths about sunscreen.

In a recent online article, Reader’s Digest brought to light ten popular myths about sunscreen that many consumers still believe. Unfortunately, these myths often encourage individuals to skip sunscreen application, which can cause serious sun damage and skin cancer, according to Joel Schlessinger MD. Setting the record straight regarding these myths is one of the most effective ways to spread awareness about sun safety.

Misconceptions about tanning, skin cancer and UV damage can lead to harmful sun exposure, explains Joel Schlessinger MD.

Popular myths include the belief that having a darker skin tone or receiving a base tan will protect against sun damage. Individuals with dark skin tones are still at risk for developing skin cancer and must wear sunscreen to protect their skin. Many believe that tanning is less dangerous than burning, however, a tan still indicates that the skin has been injured by UV rays.

Many individuals also believe that only their faces need to be protected or that sunscreen only needs to be applied during peak hours of the day. Both of these myths are untrue. Dangerous sun exposure can occur at any point during the day and anywhere on the body.

Consumers should be aware of the truth behind myths about sunscreen, says Joel Schlessinger MD.

The debate over SPFs often leaves consumers confused about exactly which products they should be using. Many dermatologists agree that reapplying every two hours and using a minimum of SPF 30 is the best way to go.

Debates about the efficacy of sunscreen ingredients have also led to several myths about sun protection products. Many consumers believe that the chemicals in sunscreens are dangerous and that they can cause allergic reactions. With physical, mineral and chemical options available, however, it is easy for consumers to find a product that works for them.

Are you concerned about some of the facts or myths you’ve heard about sunscreen? Ask Joel Schlessinger MD in the comment section below and find out the truth.

A new study shows daily sunscreen use could slow signs of aging. Dr. Joel Schlessinger explains.

Wednesday, June 19th, 2013

A new study shows daily sunscreen use could slow signs of aging. Dr. Joel Schlessinger explains.

Wearing sunscreen every day may help prevent photoaging of the skin, according to a study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine titled “Sunscreen and Prevention of Skin Aging: A Randomized Trial.” The study found that regular sun protection helps prevent signs of aging, helping people look younger longer.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger isn’t surprised that sunscreen could be beneficial in more ways than one.

Daily sun protection is something Dr. Joel Schlessinger and other dermatologists have stood by for years, but this is the first large-scale study to support this advice.

The study had one group of participants use sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher every day while another group used the product at their discretion. After four and a half years, the people who wore daily sun protection were 24% less likely to show more rapid signs of aging.

The importance of a daily sunscreen is something Dr. Joel Schlessinger stresses to all his patients. A broad spectrum sunscreen is essential because, while all sun protection products fight UVB rays that burn the skin, not all formulas protect against UVA rays that age the skin. Shielding your skin from both aging and burning rays promotes a more youthful appearance.

It’s also important to apply sunscreen correctly, says Dr. Joel Schlessinger.

UV damage can reach your skin even if you’re inside all day. For optimal results, apply sun protection to your face, neck, arms, hands and any other exposed areas every day. Additionally, most people only apply about 25% of the recommended amount of sunscreen. A full ounce, or the equivalent of a full shot glass, is enough to completely cover your skin. The product should also be reapplied after swimming, heavy sweating or whenever you spend more than a few hours outside.

Do you wear sunscreen every day? Share with us in the comments.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger supports the ban of tanning beds for all minors

Friday, February 15th, 2013

Dr. Joel Schlessinger supports the ban of tanning beds for all minors
A recent report noted that Maine lawmakers are considering banning the use of tanning beds for all people under the age of 18. If this bill passes, Maine will be the third state to ban those under the age of 18 from using a tanning bed.

The current law permits minors to tan indoors if they have a signed note from a parent or guardian. The new bill would ban all tanning for minors. Other states that currently have this ban are Vermont and California.

Other states have made similar restrictions, such as prohibiting tanning among children under the age of 16 or requiring parental supervision.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger is very happy to see these bills beginning to become more popular.

“I am so happy to see that these bills are proceeding,” said Dr. Joel Schlessinger. “This is a hugely important concern to all dermatologists and worth passage to guard our children from harm.”

Dr. Joel Schlessinger has always been a strong supporter of protecting all people from damaging UVA and UVB rays that can cause skin burns, premature wrinkles, hyperpigmentation and skin cancer.

“In Nebraska, I am proud to be a supporter of the same sort of bill and hope that this will save future generations from melanomas and skin cancers they might have developed.”

Find out other measures Dr. Joel Schlessinger has taken for enhanced sun protection safety.

As a board-certified dermatologist and cosmetic surgeon, Dr. Joel Schlessinger is very passionate about healthy skin that is well-protected from the damaging effects of the sun. He recommends wearing sunscreen every day, even if you aren’t exposed to direct sunlight. Discover Dr. Joel Schlessinger’s favorite sunscreens here.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger is also a strong advocate for the use of sunscreen in schools. Many schools have banned the use of sunscreen for children, yet these children are still exposed to direct sunlight during outdoor recess. Dr. Joel Schlessinger appeared on the Huffington Post this past summer to discuss the implications of this ban.

Would you support a ban of tanning beds for all minors? Tell us your thoughts in the comments.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger supports complaint against Jersey Shore TV show

Tuesday, January 29th, 2013

Dr. Joel Schlessinger supports complaint against Jersey Shore TV showThe Skin Cancer Foundation recently lodged a formal complaint against the Federal Trade Commission about the television show, Jersey Shore. The Skin Cancer Foundation claims that this television show is a “health-hazard” because the “still available episodes of the show promote tanning, especially in tanning beds, which encourages young viewers to engage in a cancer-causing habit.”

Jersey Shore is a reality television that follows eight housemates spending their summer at the Jersey Shore. In the show, the eight stars consistently use tanning beds to darken their skin.

The Skin Cancer Foundation would like to see the Federal Trade Commission look into this claim while MTV puts warning labels on all reruns and online episodes. They would also like to see warning labels on all products, advertisements and games tied to the television show, warning of the dangers of tanning.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger is very passionate about this issue and supports The Skin Cancer Foundation’s efforts.

“Shows like this end up encouraging young people, including children, to take up a habit that has been shown to cause cancer,” said Dr. Joel Schlessinger.

“Just like television and the film industry essentially toned down the appearance of smoking in their movies and shows, this can do the same for tanning.”

MTV has responded to the request, saying that while it does not plan to include warnings on the show, it does applaud the organization’s “efforts to bring attention to these issues, which are important to our audiences and the public health.”

Dr. Joel Schlessinger hopes to see a change in the portrayal of tanning beds on television.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger has high hopes for this complaint as he sees this as a serious issue in our society today.

“I hope it succeeds and wish Dr. Sarnoff and the Skin Cancer Foundation success!”

Dr. Joel Schlessinger is passionate about stopping the spread of skin cancer, especially in adolescents. Learn more about Dr. Joel Schlessinger’s involvement in the fight for skin cancer.

Do you think Jersey Shore leads to more tanning bed use? Tell us your opinions in the comments.

Click here to read the article “‘Jersey Shore’ still promotes tanning, group says,” featured in USAToday. 

Joel Schlessinger MD answers frequently asked questions about skin care for kids

Wednesday, January 16th, 2013

Skin care often focuses on anti aging and rejuvenation, but children need a very different routine. Because kids have more sensitive skin than adults, they need products that are formulated without irritating ingredients. Fortunately, there are several formulas available with gentle ingredients that won’t irritate your child’s sensitive skin. Joel Schlessinger highlights a few of his favorite kid-friendly products in his latest presentation.

How are skin care products different for children? Joel Schlessinger MD explains.

Children should always wash with gentle, fragrance-free cleansers and soaps. Joel Schlessinger recommends Avene Cold Cream Ultra-Rich Soap-Free Cleansing Bar. This nourishing bar gently cleanses without stripping the skin, leaving behind a protective film and maintaining the skin’s natural pH balance. After bathing, apply a moisturizer like Avene TriXera+ Selectiose Emollient Cream to prevent dry skin.

Joel Schlessinger also suggests applying a daily sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher to protect your child from the sun’s damaging rays. EltaMD UV Pure SPF 47 offers broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection without irritating your child’s skin. Its gentle formula is also paraben-free, sensitivity-free, fragrance-free, non-comedogenic and won’t sting the eyes. Read more information about sun protection for babies from Joel Schlessinger MD.

For specific treatment, make an appointment for your child to see a local dermatologist.

Read more skin care advice from Joel Schlessinger MD in his other presentations.

Joel Schlessinger MD regularly offers expert advice on various skin care concerns through his presentations. Some of his most recent presentations include:

Is there a product both you and your children love? Share with us in the comments.

Joel Schlessinger MD answers frequently asked questions about melasma

Thursday, November 8th, 2012

Melasma is a form of hyperpigmentation often caused by uncontrolled exposure to sunlight or pregnancy. This patchy discoloration, usually appearing on the cheeks, nose, upper lip and chin, is a common skin condition for many women between the ages of 20 and 50. Fortunately, there are several products available to help diminish these dark spots.

Joel Schlessinger MD’s recent presentation on frequently asked questions about melasma discusses the causes of this condition and highlights several recommendations for products proven to help minimize dark spots. For specific treatment options, you should make an appointment to see your local dermatologist.

How do you treat melasma? Share with us in the comments.