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The growing prevalence of skin cancer among men

Article-The growing prevalence of skin cancer among men

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“In the UAE, skin cancer accounts for 14.5 per cent of cancer cases among males," says Micah Naidoo, Chairman at MENAP SMI & Head of Africa Zone at Sanofi Consumer Healthcare.

The most severe type of skin cancer, melanoma, affects both sexes differently. Melanoma causes more deaths in males than in women, at any age, this is accurate. White male adolescents and young adults have nearly a twofold greater risk of dying from melanoma than do caucasian girls of the same age.

Men are more likely than women to get melanoma by the age of 50. By the age of 65, this percentage increases, making males 2 times more likely than women of the same age to get melanoma. Men are also three times more likely than women in that age range to acquire melanoma by the time they are 80.

According to the American Academy of Dermatology Association, men have a lack of knowledge when it comes to sun protection, hence they are less inclined to use it. 

Men and women both apply sunscreen, but women do it more frequently. Women also use sunscreen-containing cosmetics and makeup. Thus, sun protection appears to be a factor in why melanoma affects men more frequently.

The disparities, however, don't appear to be explained by sun protection alone. Researchers think that men's skin may be a significant contributing factor. Men's skin is different from women's skin, as we all know. Men have less subcutaneous fat and thicker skin. Additionally, a man's skin has a higher level of the fibers, collagen, and elastin, which give the skin rigidity and keep it taut.

According to research, these variations increase the likelihood that men's skin may be harmed by the sun's ultraviolet (UV) radiation. According to a study conducted in Netherlands, men's skin reacts to UV radiation more strongly than women's skin does. The same outcome was achieved by different research.

Additionally, studies suggest that a woman's skin may be more adept at mending UV light injury.

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Micah Naidoo, Chairman at MENAP SMI & Head of Africa Zone at Sanofi Consumer Healthcare

The skincare products market size in the MENA region is estimated to reach $6 billion by 2024, while the Middle East alone is projected to reach $1.9 billion by 2027. This specific market is rapidly growing and is predicted to retain its dominance, as the highest segment within skincare products is dedicated to hydration, according to insights by Sanofi Consumer Healthcare.

Another research also looked at Saudi population's attitudes and behaviors related to sun protection, as well as their understanding of sun exposure and the danger of skin cancer. Findings demonstrated that women were more likely than males to be aware of the risks associated with sun exposure and to adopt precautionary measures, such as using sunscreen.

Through continuous and repeated sun-education messaging, public health programs must encourage attitude modification and preventative behavior in addition to information, relayed the study. The design of educational campaigns should consider how the message might complement rather than challenge the existing norms and values held by various demographic groups.

Future primary prevention initiatives among highly exposed individuals may benefit from addressing the apparent assumption that no protection is needed during frequent accidental sun exposures to better limit the spread of skin cancer.

“In the UAE, skin cancer accounts for 14.5 per cent of cancer cases among males. To make circumstances more difficult, it is still a challenge to garner comprehensive figures throughout the country. This has prompted the need for better education regarding the importance of skincare. In other words, boasting about our natural high levels of melanin is not enough to protect the people of the region from diseases related to our skin. Ultimately, healthier skin is one of the key indicators of the quality of well-being,” says Micah Naidoo, Chairman at MENAP SMI & Head of Africa Zone at Sanofi Consumer Healthcare.

Naidoo further comments on the present state of healthcare across the region requires improved legislation, environmental policy, and proper education on self-care. “Skincare, among others, plays a crucial role in maintaining good health. This can be achieved by legitimate information on products, practices, and a support system.

More organisations need to work closely together to ensure better engagement with key stakeholders, policymakers, and communities to provide opportunities for credible information on safe skincare. From collagen-rich foods to personalized moisturisers, there are multiple ways people can incorporate skincare routines that can improve their overall health. To do so, there must be a significant push to prioritise the well-being of the public through programs and education that provide the best guidance on proper skincare,” he concludes.

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