May is Skin Cancer Awareness month and University Hospital is working to make sure people know how to protect themselves.
Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the U-S…. and it’s the focus of this month’s Cancer Answer report. Kimberely Scott has the story.
Summer time and warm temperatures mean fun in the sun, but it also raises the possibility of developing skin cancer.
Dr. Anna Kay Duckworth, “I think the most important thing is that you’re not out in the sun at the hottest part of the day. Seeking shade between the hours of 10 am and 2 pm. would be very important.”
But if you find yourself fighting the sun’s rays, Dr. Anna Kay Duckworth says use sunscreen…. and use it generously.
Dr. Duckworth, “so the actual active ingredients in sunscreen are inactivated by sunlight and UV rays, so they’re only capable as a chemical or as a sun blocker of lasting 80 minutes.”
Recent headlines are raising questions about SPF or sun protection factors, to that Dr. Duckworth offers this advice.
Dr. Duckworth, “the most important thing is that you’re buying a branded product that we know has undergone extensive testing. So the American Academy of dermatology recommends an SPF of at least 30. if you go beyond that to a SPF of at least 50, I think you’re probably secure to get at least a 30 from your SPF.
Dr. Duckworth says tanning beds make more of an impact on the skin then actual sun rays.
Dr. Duckworth, “indoor tanning significantly increases your chances of developing non melanoma and melanoma skin cancers. just going one time while your in high school increase your chances of basil cell carcinoma. and going before the age of 35 increases your chances of melanoma beyond 50%.”
Fun in the sun also means sunscreen safety….so keep it handy as you enjoy the lazy days of summer.
Melanoma is the most dangerous kind of skin cancer. If you’re concerned about a spot on your skin, contact your doctor for a check up.