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Skin Cancer Prevention

 

Skin cancer is preventable. By practicing sun safety and avoiding the use of tanning beds, you can prevent skin cancer in yourself and your children.

Remember:

Sunburns, especially in childhood, show a strong correlation with the development of melanoma and basal cell carcinoma later in life

A single severe sunburn in childhood can double a person’s risk of developing melanoma.

Squamous cell carcinoma appears to be related to cumulative sun exposure. This is true even on a low dose basis. Even if there is no visible burn, there is still a risk.

The use of artificial tanning beds has been linked to melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer.

 

Practice sun safety with the following:

  • Stay out of the sun between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. or whenever the UV Index* is 3 or higher
  • Cover arms and legs with loose-fitting, tightly woven and lightweight clothing
  • Wear a wide-brim hat to protect head, face, neck and ears
  • Stay in the shade
  • Wear sunglasses. A UV protection of 400 blocks 99% of UVA and UVB rays. Wraparound styles wrap to protect the sides of the eyes.

When exposed to the sun:

  • Wear sunscreen** with an SPF of 30 or higher
  • apply generously at least 20 minutes before going into the sun
  • reapply every 2-3 hours or after swimming or perspiring
  • alternate the application of sunscreen with the application of bug sprays
  • be sure to reach under the edges of your clothing, the back of your neck, your ears and other places that are often missed or forgotten

 

Use these precautions all year, not just in the summertime. The sun’s rays also reflect off of snow, sand, water and concrete.

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