Broken Arrow Family Drug blog
5 Steps to Decrease your risk of Skin Cancer
Did you know that skin cancer is the most common type of cancer prevalent in the United States? Indeed, more than 3.5 million new cases of skin cancer are diagnosed annually. Unless you’re living in a different hemisphere this month, you need to be aware of UV Safety. July is UltraViolet (UV) Safety month because many of us, despite slapping on some sunscreen at the beach, still don’t take the proper precautions when it comes to preventing skin cancer, or even understand the real dangers with UV exposure.
Ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun are the main cause of skin cancer, which is reason enough to take the necessary precautions, but UV damage can also cause wrinkles and blotchy skin, cataracts and other eye damage and even immune issues — all of which we’d like to avoid!
Fortunately, skin cancer is largely preventable by taking simple steps to decrease risk.
Decrease your risk of Skin Cancer by practicing the following 5 steps when outdoors:
1. First, before planning an outdoor activity, check the UV INDEX (The UV Index forecast is issued daily by the National Weather Service and EPA) to determine if it might be best to stay indoors.
2. Wear Sunscreen of at least SPF 30, and re-apply often, especially after exiting the water. Sunburns significantly increase your risk of skin cancer, especially in children. Don’t be fooled by cloudy days – it’s still possible to burn under overcast skies.
3. Wear protective gear such as hats with wide brims, sunglasses and light-weight long sleeve shirts and pants if your skin is prone to burning.
4. Seek out shade where you can. You’ll still be able to enjoy the scenery and temperatures.
5. Get knowledgeable on Vitamin D. You can read our own handy post about the importance of Vitamin D right here.