Is Your Skin Protected? A Skin Cancer Prevention Q&A

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Is Your Skin Protected? A Skin Cancer Prevention Q&A

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Is Your Skin Protected? A Skin Cancer Prevention Q&A

 Skin cancer may be the most common type of cancer, but it is also the most preventable. As you head to the beach, pool, and other outdoor activities with your family this summer, be sure you’re doing everything you can to protect your skin.

Read on for a Q&A with information that can help you prevent skin cancer not only during the warmer months, but throughout the year.


What SPF should I use?

Almost everyone understands the importance of using sunscreen. But with such a wide range of SPFs available, it can be difficult to know what SPF is the most effective.

One key factor in preventing skin cancer is not letting your skin burn. So, the first criteria to consider when choosing an SPF is what number is high enough to prevent sun burn.

For daily use or if you’ll only be outside for a small amount of time SPF 15 will do. However, if you’re going to be outside for a long period of time, go with a sunscreen that is at least SPF 30.


How effective is sitting in the shade?

Staying in the shade is recommended by many skin prevention organizations and experts. When you head to the beach, be sure to take an umbrella. If you’re outside for a BBQ or spending time by the pool, try to sit in the shade of a tree rather than directly in the sun.









Via Flickr – by Jenn Durfey


What clothing provides the best protection? 

Of course, the more covered up you are the better; however, most people will not want to wear long pants and long sleeves in the summer heat. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend hats with circular brims to shield your scalp, face, neck, and ears, and sunglasses to protect your eyes. The organization also notes that dark clothes may be more beneficial than lighter ones.


Via Flickr – by Loren Sztajer


Are there certain times during the day that I should avoid the sun?

 If possible, limit your exposure to the sun between 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. The Skin Cancer Foundation notes that this is when the suns rays are strongest and recommends seeking the shelter of shaded area when outdoors during those hours.


Is it true that some of my medications could make me more sensitive to sunlight?

Yes. Be sure to ask your doctor whether any medications you’re taking, including over-the-counter medicines, could make you more sensitive to sunlight.

Take steps to protect your skin when you’re out in the sun, and be vigilant about checking it regularly for early signs of skin cancer, such as abnormal moles. Your best defense against skin cancer is to be proactive.

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