Posted on 2/2/14

tanningOWENSBORO, Ky. (6/24/14) — As summer approaches in later June it’s important to understand the importance of protecting our skin in the sun from skin cancer.

Many adults grew up in a time where “sunscreen” was relegated for people that chose to purchase it, believed one good burn was all you needed before a tan would appear or for those who easily burned from the sun’s rays.

Today, we know much more about the harmful effects posed to the rays of the sun.

First things first, what exactly is skin cancer?

Skin cancer begins when cells that are not normal grow on the skin. Most often it appears on the head, face, neck, hands and arms. Many skin cancers appear after age 50, but the sun damages the skin from early childhood. In fact, according to the American Academy of Dermatology, 80 percent of damage takes place before the age of 18.

Remember, it is important to protect your children from the sun. Infants six months and younger should not be in the sun at all.

There are three types of skin cancer: basal cell, squamous cell, and melanoma. The first two types are curable if found early. Melanoma is the most dangerous type. It can spread quickly to other parts of the body. If not treated, melanoma can result in death.

What causes a person to develop skin cancer?

Most skin cancers are caused by ultraviolet (UV) radiation. UV radiation comes from the sun and tanning beds. People of all races can get skin cancer, but those with fair skin and blonde or red hair are actually most at risk.  Your chance of getting skin cancer increases with having multiple moles, sunburns as a child, or if you have a family member who has had the disease.

What are the symptoms?

Skin cancer is usually not painful but most commonly appears as a new growth on the skin, a change in an old growth, or a sore that does not heal. Not all skin cancers are the same.  They may look pale or red. They may feel crusty, flat, scaly, smooth or firm. The first sign of melanoma is often a new mole or a change in the size, shape, color or feel of an existing mole. Most melanomas have a black or blue-black area.

How can I protect myself?

  • Stay out of the sun between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., whenever possible.

  • Wear long sleeves, long pants, sunglasses and a hat with a wide brim when you are in the sun.

  • Use sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 30. Re-apply every two hours, even if waterproof.

  • Avoid tanning beds.

  • Do a skin self-exam once a month.

  • After age 50, ask your doctor to examine your skin as part of your routine checkup.

It’s hard to refrain from being in the sun this time of year, but if you are, please play it safe in the sun by limiting your exposure, wearing your sunscreen and seeing a dermatologist.

Where can I get more information?

For information about cancer resources in your community, call the Kentucky Cancer Program at (270) 683-2560.

The information comes from the National Cancer Institute, the American Cancer Society, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

SurfKY News
Jaime Rafferty, Kentucky Cancer Program – Green River Cancer Control Specialist your social media marketing partner

LIKE SurfKY on Facebook - Click here to LIKE us now.

© Copyright 2015 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story on social media.

3/13 - 16

Weather Sponsored by

1 DOW 17,081.89
-49.97 (-0.29%)    
2 S&P 2,003.69
-13.77 (-0.68%)    
3 NASDAQ 4,796.61
-42.03 (-0.87%)    

Stock Report Sponsored by

3/13 - 16

Most Read This Week

October 10, 2015 6829

25-Mile Car Chase on Pennyrile Ends in Two Arrests

by SurfKY News
October 07, 2015 5170

Alleged Attempt to Hide Meth in Doughnuts Results…

by SurfKY News
October 12, 2015 3562

Crime Stoppers Top Most Wanted - October 12, 2015

by SurfKY News
October 07, 2015 3556

3 From Greenville Indicted On Drug Charges

by SurfKY News
October 07, 2015 3471

Vehicle Overturns during Two-Car Collision

by Rita Dukes Smith, SurfKY News Director

Most Read This Month

September 16, 2015 14023

Mining Accident Fatality - Update

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News
September 30, 2015 12113

Dawson Woman Dead After Princeton Factory…

by SurfKY News

Stories Trending Now

October 12, 2015 3562

Crime Stoppers Top Most Wanted - October 12, 2015

by SurfKY News
October 12, 2015 2382

Two-Vehicle Collision Results in One Driver…

by SurfKY News
October 12, 2015 2275

Four Injured after Vehicle Careens down…

by SurfKY News
October 12, 2015 2261

MPD Foot Patrol Charges Man with Trafficking in…

by SurfKY News
October 13, 2015 2230

Man Accused of Pretending to Hold Gun on Police

by SurfKY News
October 12, 2015 1722

Kentucky Health Co-op Closing Due to Congress…

by SurfKY News
October 12, 2015 1633

Driver Dies after Single-Vehicle Collision on…

by SurfKY News
October 13, 2015 1531

BBQ Champs Chosen during Hanson Lions Blast-off

by Tammy Holloway, SurfKY News
October 12, 2015 1503

UPDATE: KSP Captures Escapee

by SurfKY News
October 12, 2015 1275

Madisonville Police Arrest Reports Released -…

by SurfKY News