When it comes, to protecting the body from harmful ultraviolet rays, most people forget about the lips. Your lips are an integral part of your body, and you must give them the same attention as you give the other body parts, by applying lip balm with sunscreen.
Here are 5 Reasons why you must apply lip balm with SPF on your lips:
1. Skipping SPF can expose your lips to actinic cheilitis
Actinic cheilitis is a condition where your lips become inflamed and painful. You might experience an unpleasant sensation when eating acidic or spicy food.
If you’ve noticed that your lips are scaly, rough or have lesions on them, you are most likely to have the condition. The lesions may be tiny or large and make the skin look unattractive and unsightly.
The patches can either be reddish brown, whitish or skin-coloured. If left untreated, the condition can lead to skin cancer.
Other names for actinic cheilitis are solar cheilosis, actinic cheilosis, actinic keratosis of the lip, farmer’s lip, sailor’s lip or AC.
2. Shiny lip balms or lip gloss without SPF can lead to cancer
Did you know that your regular lip gloss could be helping increase your chances of getting cancer? The sleek kind that leaves your lips looking extra-glossy could predispose you to the disease in the long term.
According to experts, the compounds that make the glossy lip balms shinny make it possible for the UV rays to hit your lips harder.
According to Dr. Christine Brown, Baylor University’s dermatologist, you’re doing more harm than good by slathering SFP-free lip gloss on your lips. Instead of the sunrays getting reflected away from your skin, they will penetrate into your lips more instead.
3. Cancer of the lips is very aggressive
Lips have squamous cells, meaning their tissue is very soft. Squamous carcinoma: cancer that forms on the lips is usually very destructive.
Cancer will spread faster on your lips than on any other part of the body.
4. Prevention is less stressful than cure
Mitigating lip cancer by using a lip balm with SPF is easier and cheaper than treating it. Cancer treatment involves invasive procedures like surgery.
Surgery has several risk factors such as reacting to anaesthesia, waking up during surgery, spiking of blood pressure and heart rate during operation, etc.
Other forms of treatment are radiation and chemotherapy. The procedures are not only expensive, but they can also take a toll on your body.
5. To prevent premature ageing
If you have the habit of sunbathing with sunscreen on every part of your body apart from the lips, your lips might suffer from the sun’s effects.
The UV rays can make the skin of the lips thinner hence prone to easy tears and rips. The lips start thinning because the harmful rays take away the skin’s natural elasticity.
Lips with tears could develop wounds that could be unappealing to a lot of people. Besides developing wounds, your lips could also be prone to secondary infections that could turn septic.
To protect your lips using SPF lip balm, reapply is several times throughout the day. Remember that ultraviolet rays are also present on cloudy days; hence apply your lip balm every single day.
With dermatologists reporting more case of lip cancer, it’s, paramount to take the initiative to use a lip balm with SPF. Not to scare you, but cancer of the skin can lead to permanent disfigurement of the lips so it’s important to take it seriously.