Avoiding Skin Cancer

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June 8, 2015 by Springhill Physician Practices


Summer is finally here and most of us will head to the beach or the pool to relax.

 

While relaxation is very important to your health, Springhill Physician Practices would like to remind you to take care of your skin this summer. Skin Cancer is the fastest growing type of cancer in the United States. It is also the second most common form of cancer among younger Americans, age 20-39 and since most skin cancers (up to 85%) are caused simply by overexposure to the sun, they are highly preventable. Being aware of the risk factors associated with skin cancer and changing your lifestyle to avoid those risk factors, as much as possible, will help ensure healthy skin.

 

First, when in the sun, follow the example of farmers. Farmhands don’t wear thick overalls and cotton shirts because they enjoy the heat. Instead, despite the warm temperatures they cover up and wear a hat to protect themselves from the sun. This might put a damper on your plans for that perfect tan, but will certainly keep you safer. Time of day is important too, as the sun is in its highest in the sky between 10am and 4pm. Before or after these hours, sunlight and UV rays are less intense for your skin. During times of direct sunlight, when you cannot cover up, make sure you use sun block with at least 15 SPF that works for both UVA and UVB rays. Reapply after swimming or any other activity that could remove the protection from your skin. Clouds might provide shade, but they don’t provide a cover from UV rays. Your body can still get an unhealthy dose of UVA on an overcast day.

 

Even if you are very careful to avoid risky sun exposure, skin cancer is not 100% avoidable. So it is important to take note of any unusual moles or discolorations on the skin. Some skin cancers spread quickly. Catching it early is vital. If you have any questionable looking areas of skin, please schedule an appointment soon. Healthy skin means a healthier you.

 

Happy Summer from Springhill Physician Practices. (251) 410-4001
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