Beware of UV rays And Skin Cancer Conditions
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Ultraviolet (UV) light is an electromagnetic radiation with a wavelength from 10 nm (30 PHz) to 380 nm (750 THz), shorter than that of visible light but longer than X-rays. UV radiation is present in sunlight, and also produced by electric arcs and specialized lights such as mercury-vapor lamps, tanning lamps, and black lights. Although lacking the energy to ionize atoms, long-wavelength ultraviolet radiation can cause chemical reactions, and causes many substances to glow or fluoresce. Consequently, biological effects of UV are greater than simple heating effects, and many practical applications of UV radiation derive from its interactions with organic molecules.
Suntan, freckling and sunburn are familiar effects of over-exposure, along with higher risk of skin cancer. Living things on dry land would be severely damaged by ultraviolet radiation from the sun if most of it were not filtered out by the Earth’s atmosphere. More-energetic, shorter-wavelength “extreme” UV below 121 nm ionizes air so strongly that it is absorbed before it reaches the ground. Ultraviolet is also responsible for the formation of bone-strengthening vitamin D in most land vertebrates, including humans. The UV spectrum thus has effects both beneficial and harmful to human health.
UV radiation was discovered in 1801 when the German physicist Johann Wilhelm Ritter observed that invisible rays just beyond the violet end of the visible spectrum darkened silver chloride-soaked paper more quickly than violet light itself. He called them “oxidizing rays” to emphasize chemical reactivity and to distinguish them from “heat rays”, discovered the previous year at the other end of the visible spectrum. The simpler term “chemical rays” was adopted shortly thereafter, and it remained popular throughout the 19th century, although there were those who held that these were an entirely different sort of radiation from light (notably John William Draper, who named them “tithonic rays”). The terms chemical and heat rays were eventually dropped in favor of ultraviolet and infrared radiation, respectively. In 1878 the effect of short-wavelength light on sterilizing bacteria was discovered. By 1903 it was known the most effective wavelengths were around 250 nm. In 1960, the effect of ultraviolet radiation on DNA was established.
The discovery of the ultraviolet radiation below 200 nm, named vacuum ultraviolet because it is strongly absorbed by air, was made in 1893 by the German physicist Victor Schumann.
UV Radiation blockage
· Solar ultraviolet
Very hot objects emit UV radiation. The Sun emits ultraviolet radiation at all wavelengths, including the extreme ultraviolet where it crosses into X-rays at 10 nm. Extremely hot stars emit proportionally more UV radiation than the Sun. Sunlight in space at the top of Earth’s atmosphere is composed of about 50% infrared light, 40% visible light, and 10% ultraviolet light, for a total intensity of about 1400 W/m2 in vacuum.
However, at ground level sunlight is 44% visible light, 3% ultraviolet (with the Sun at its zenith), and the remainder infrared. Thus, the atmosphere blocks about 77% of the Sun’s UV, almost entirely in the shorter UV wavelengths, when the Sun is highest in the sky (zenith). Of the ultraviolet radiation that reaches the Earth’s surface, more than 95% is the longer wavelengths of UVA, with the small remainder UVB. There is essentially no UVC. The fraction of UVB which remains in UV light after passing through the atmosphere is heavily dependent on cloud cover and atmospheric conditions. Thick clouds block UVB effectively; but in “partly cloudy” days, patches of blue sky showing between clouds are also sources of (scattered) UVA and UVB, which are produced by Rayleigh scattering in the same way as the visible blue light from those parts of the sky.
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· Beneficial effects
UVB induces production of vitamin D in the skin at rates of up to 1,000 IUs per minute. This vitamin helps to regulate calcium metabolism (vital for the nervous system and bone health), immunity, cell proliferation, insulin secretion, and blood pressure.
People with higher levels of vitamin D tend to have lower rates of diabetes, heart disease, and stroke and tend to have lower blood pressure. However, it has been found that vitamin D supplementation does not improve cardiovascular health or metabolism, so the link with vitamin D must be in part indirect. It seems that those who get more sun are generally healthier, and also have higher vitamin D levels. It has been found that ultraviolet light (even UVA) produces nitric oxide (NO) in the skin, and nitric oxide can lower blood pressure. High blood pressure increases the risk of stroke and heart disease. Although long-term exposure to ultraviolet contributes to non-melanoma skin cancers that are rarely fatal, it has been found in a Danish study that those who get these cancers were less likely to die during the study, and were much less likely to have a heart attack, than those who did not have these cancers.
Harmful Skin Cancer Conditions beat by
· Harmful effects
In humans, excessive exposure to UV radiation can result in acute and chronic harmful effects on the skin, eye, and immune system.
The differential effects of various wavelengths of light on the human cornea and skin are sometimes called the “erythema action spectrum” .The action spectrum shows that UVA does not cause immediate reaction, but rather UV begins to cause photo keratitis and skin redness (with Caucasians more sensitive) at wavelengths starting near the beginning of the UVB band at 315 nm, and rapidly increasing to 300 nm. The skin and eyes are most sensitive to damage by UV at 265–275 nm, which is in the lower UVC band. At still shorter wavelengths of UV, damage continues to happen, but the overt effects are not as great with so little penetrating the atmosphere. The WHO-standard ultraviolet index is a widely publicized measurement of total strength of UV wavelengths that cause sunburn on human skin, by weighting UV exposure for action spectrum effects at a given time and location. This standard shows that most sunburn happens due to UV at wavelengths near the boundary of the UVA and UVB bands.
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· Effects on eyes
Ultraviolet rays can be reflected towards the eyes by certain substances, such as sand and snow. When this happens, the amount of UV rays the eyes are exposed to is increased. This fact is the basis of the condition photo keratitis, also known as snow blindness. Photo keratitis is sunburn of the cornea, and usually recedes within one to two days. It occurs when the eyes are exposed to large quantities of UV light in a short amount of time. The reflection of UV rays off of snow and sand are enough to incur this injury.
It is more difficult to isolate the exact amount of damage that UV imposes on the eye over a long period of time, as the body has its own built-in defense against harmful rays. If you were to try to look up at the sun, you would find that you would not be able to do so for any length of time. Your eyes would naturally start to close. This effect is also noticed on especially bright days, displayed in the form of squinting. What is known, however, is that cumulative exposure to UV rays is one of the causes of opacity of the eye’s lens, called cataract, a condition that displays itself primarily in elderly people, and results in blurred and fuzzy vision.
Left Side Arm of driver’s free of skin cancer condition
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·Drivers skin cancers
Nearly 53 percent of skin cancers in the US occur on the left, or drivers’, side of the body, according to a new study in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. The distribution pattern supports the theory that automobile drivers in the US are exposed to more ultraviolet (UV) radiation on the left, through the driver’s side window, and that ultraviolet A (UVA) radiation causes more damage than formerly believed.
About 90 percent of all skin cancers are associated with the sun’s UV radio- tion, which reaches the earth in the form of long-wave ultraviolet A (UVA) and shortwave ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation. Until recently, many scientists believed the primary cause of skin cancers was UVB radiation. Since glass effectively blocks UVB while cars’ side windows allow 63 percent of UVA to penetrate, “These [new] results may suggest that perhaps UVA plays a more important role in skin cancer development than previously thought,” said Susan T. But- ler, MD, coauthor of the study. This study reinforces previous research showing that UVA does indeed play a role in skin cancer.
In one particular kind of skin cancer, the distribution pattern was even more lopsided: 74 percent of all melanomas in site (early, non-invasive melanomas that have not spread from their original tumor sites) were on the left. Invasive melanomas are the deadliest skin cancers, killing an estimated 8,650 people in the US every year. These findings were “perhaps the most striking,” said Dr. Butler. “This may suggest that chronic exposure to UVA over the years may play a role in melanoma in site development.”
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