May is Melanoma/Skin Cancer Detection & Prevention Month. We’re committed to helping you stay educated AND "sun-safe"… so read on! The skin is the largest organ in the body and according to the American Cancer Society, skin cancer is the most common of all cancers and accounts for nearly half of all cancers in the United States! More than 3.6 million cases of basal and squamous cell (non-melanoma) skin cancers are found each year. These types of cancers typically develop on sun-exposed areas of the skin such as the face, ear, neck, lips, and the backs of the hands. Melanoma, the most serious type of skin cancer, will account for more than 76,000 cases of invasive skin cancer in 2014. Melanoma is almost always curable when it is found in its very early stages. Although it accounts for only a small percentage of skin cancer, it is far more dangerous than other skin cancers and causes approximately 75% of all skin cancer deaths annually. Avoiding the sun in the sunshine state can be difficult, but here are some ideas to help you be 'sun-safe':
- Avoid the sun between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
- Seek shade.
- Wear sunglasses with 99% to 100% UV absorption.
- Avoid tanning beds & sun lamps.
- Follow the Slap-slip-slop rule:
- Slap on a hat.
- Slip on a shirt & cover up with protective clothing.
- Slop on sunscreen with (SPF) of 15 or higher & reapply every 2 hours when outside; even on hazy or overcast days!
*Information provided by American Cancer Society.