A Summer Skin Cancer Primer
May. 26, 2016
Can you believe itâs already the end of May?! This weekend marks the unofficial âbeginning of summer.â Barbecue season commences, community pools open and tourists dust off their fanny packs and long socks to hit various destinations. Itâs also the culmination of a month-long Melanoma and Skin Cancer Detection and Prevention campaign designed to get folks thinking about how the sun affects their largest organ: Skin! Whether youâre studying respiratory therapy, dental hygiene or another one of our 20+ health care degree programs, skin cancer awareness is a topic that concerns us all. Did you know that Melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, strikes about 70,000 Americans each year and kills nearly 10,000, reports theÂ Centers for Disease Control and Prevention? It can start in something as small as a spot on your back and quickly affect your entire body. Thatâs why skin cancer awareness, prevention and detection is so important! It starts with being smart â when youâre outside, what type of sunscreen is the best? We know with all the labels, numbers and acronyms, it can be a bit overwhelming! Hereâs an infographics that the American Academy of Dermatology developed to help break it down: Myth: Suntans are meant to be developed over the course of the summer. Fact: Any change to the pigment of your skin could be potential for development of skin cancer. Myth: Itâs an overcast day, today. I only need to wear sunscreen when itâs sunny. Fact: TheÂ Skin Cancer FoundationÂ says that clouds block as little as 20% of UV rays â so on a cloudy day youâre still getting up to 80% of the sunâs harsh effects. Myth: Because of my skin tone, I donât get sunburnt. So this article isnât really for me. Fact: Skin damage doesnât just plague pale-skinned people. Moles, sun spots and sunburns can happen and often are detected much later, making treatment more intense.