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How dangerous is sunbathing?

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Introduction - How dangerous is sunbathing? Skin cancer affects about 50,000 Britons every year, and kills more than 2% of them. Skin cancer is a result of sunbathing, and yet not everyone realises this. This topic I have chosen to investigate is not only important to people of my own age, but also is very important to everyone. As suntan is now seen as a fashion, people will go to extremes to get this without realising the damage they are doing to themselves. People like to be in the sun because they claim to have a 'feel-good-factor' and during the summer months, millions of us will go abroad to lie in the sun to feel this. The scientific knowledge behind the effects of sunbathing is the part which many of us do not understand, so in this case study I will be looking at how dangerous sunbathing really is. The electro magnetic spectrum - What is the electromagnetic spectrum and how can we see how dangerous the suns rays are from it? Using a prism, you can split up white light to form a spectrum. The light waves are refracted as they enter and leave the prism. ...read more.


* It is more damaging in the summer, because on average, during the summer, a person takes in 70% of a persons yearly UVB. What is UVA? * It used to be thought that UVA only had a minor effect on the skin, and now later research has shown it has a major effect. * UVA penetrates deeper into the skin * UVA is more constant than UVB, as it goes throughout the whole day and the year * Causes melanin to combine with oxygen which creates the tan on your skin * Not blocked by sunscreen, but is blocked by clothing * Seems to cause cancer less than UVB * Causes Melanoma, which is more dangerous than other skin cancers What is UVC? * Is absorbed by the ozone layer * Doesn't affect the skin in anyway, because it cannot get to it * Can be found in artificial sources such as mercury arc lamps Effects of Ultraviolet radiation - What are the effects of ultraviolet radiation? Overexposure to UV radiation can have damaging health effects. It can have effects on our eyes, immune systems and can also cause skin cancer. ...read more.


The protection of the sunscreen can depend on: * The skin type of the user * The amount applied * How often the protection is re-applied * Activities the person does * The amount of sunscreen the skin has absorbed Sunscreen should be applied 20 minutes before going outside so that the cream can penetrate into the skin. Here are some facts, showing how higher SP factors, let in less UVB rays: * Factor 15, only 7% of the harmful UVB rays will get through * Factor 30, only 4% of the harmful UVB rays will get through * Factor 60, only 2% of the harmful UVB rays will get through Conclusion - Conclusively, how dangerous is sunbathing? In conclusion, I believe that sunbathing is very dangerous, but small amounts of exposure of the sun a day can be healthy for us. However, when we have got all of the vitamin D we need from the sun, and then our body does not use the rest and then just disposes of it. When we have been in the sun for about fifteen minutes, then I think we should be very careful and protect ourselves because this case study has shown that the ultraviolet rays are very damaging and can have harmful effects. ...read more.

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