Did you know that skin cancer is the leading cause of new cases of cancer in the United States? According to the American Cancer Society, more than 1 million Americans are diagnosed with skin cancer each year, totaling more than cancers of the lung, breast, colon, prostate, uterus, ovaries, and pancreas combined.
Consider these facts:
- More than 20 people die each day from skin cancer.
- One in 4 people under 40 will develop skin cancer.
- Melanoma kills more young women than any other form of cancer.
- Skin cancer is the #1 cancer in men over age 50.
- One in 5 Americans and one in 3 Caucasians will develop skin cancer in course of a lifetime. Exposure to tanning beds before age 35 increases melanoma risk by 70%.
To ensure you’re safe while enjoying being outdoors in the summer, follow these sun-safe tips:
- Apply sunscreen daily, at least a half hour before going outside in the sun.
- Wear a minimum of 30 SPF, full spectrum UVA/UVB sunscreen.
- Reapply sunscreen every two hours, or more often if swimming or sweating.
- Apply enough to cover your body parts which will be exposed to the sun; approximately 2 tablespoons for the average size adult.
- Wear a hat with at least a three-inch brim.
- Protect your eyes with 100% UV sunglasses.
- Try to avoid the sun during peak hours: 11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Source: American Cancer Society
Author: Jennifer Even, Extension Educator, Family and Consumer Sciences/EFNEP, Ohio State University Extension.