Summer is almost here! It’s time to stock up on sunscreen and read up on keeping your skin healthy and cancer-free. After all, May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month, and, awareness matters.
To help you get a better understanding about skin cancer, here are some facts, statistics and prevention tips you should know as we get ready for sunny days and warmer weather across the U.S.
Skin Cancer Facts
The three major types of skin cancer are melanoma, basal cell carcinoma (most common) and squamous cell carcinoma (second most common).
Melanoma affects pigment cells, which are deep within the layers of your skin. Basal and squamous cell carcinoma cancers attack cells close to the top layer of skin.
The top cause for skin cancer is UV ray exposure through direct sunlight and tanning beds, while light- to fair-skinned people are at the highest risk for developing skin cancer. Also, if you have more than 50 common moles – or if you have an atypical mole known as a dysplastic nevus – you may be at a higher risk for skin cancer.
To learn more about these three common types of skin cancer, click here.
Skin Cancer Stats
Skin Cancer Prevention Tips
The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends using an SPF 15 or higher sunscreen any time you go outdoors. It’s also suggested that you use a broad spectrum sunscreen (UVA/UVB). And, if you’re going to be outdoors for a long period of time, use a water-resistant sunscreen that’s an SPF 30 or higher.
But, just using sunscreen might not be enough. You should also be sure to follow these guidelines:
Do you have any skin cancer prevention tips to share? Talk to us in the comments below. And, don’t forget to stay safe, cool and put on SPF 15 or higher sunscreen before you head outdoors this summer.
(Image via ThetaHealth.)