Don't Fry Day, Protect Your Skin From Skin Cancer

by GregP_WN

Friday, May 24th is "Don't Fry Day". A day set aside by the  National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention to encourage sun safety awareness. The National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention encourages you to protect your skin this Friday, and every day. Here are some tips to help you do that. 

Don't Fryday Protect Your Skin

Memorial Day is the traditional kick-off to the Summer fun season, and many people will be spending the weekend outside and perhaps getting their first sunburn of the season. Remember to protect your skin and avoid getting that sunburn with some of these tips. 

While no single tip or prevention measure will fully protect you from overexposure to UV radiation, try to practice as many of these as you can. 

*Do Not Burn or Tan
*Seek Shade
*Wear Sun-Protective Clothing
*Generously Apply Sunscreen
*Use Extra Caution Near Water, Snow, and Sand
*Get Vitamin D Safely

With Summer time coming, Americans are getting ready to get outside and enjoy the sunshine. Following some of these simple tips and being aware of new spots on your skin, and getting them checked can help to prevent skin cancer. The American Cancer Society estimates that one person dies every hour. This year alone, the American Cancer Society estimates there will be more than 73,870 new cases of malignant melanoma, the most serious form of skin cancer, and more than two million new cases of basal cell and squamous cell skin cancers in the U.S.

The National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention also says  "Fortunately, skin cancer is highly curable if found early and can be prevented. Remember to Slip! Slop! Slap!...and Wrap when you’re outdoors — slip on a shirt, slop on broad spectrum sunscreen of SPF 30 or higher, slap on a wide-brimmed hat, and wrap on sunglasses. The best way to detect skin cancer early is to examine your skin regularly and recognize changes in moles and skin growths."

Skin Cancer Prevention and Early Detection

According to the American Cancer Society, Skin Cancer is the most common cancer in the United States. In fact, more skin cancers are diagnosed in the US each year than all other cancers combined. The number of skin cancer cases has been going up over the past few decades.

The good news is that you can do a lot to protect yourself and your family from skin cancer, or catch it early so that it can be treated effectively. Most skin cancers are caused by too much exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays. Most of this exposure comes from the sun, but some may come from man-made sources, such as indoor tanning beds and sun lamps.

You don’t need x-rays or blood tests to find skin cancer early – just your eyes and a mirror. If you have skin cancer, finding it early is the best way to make sure it can be treated with success.

More Tips to Protect Yourself

1. Be safe in the sun.

The American Cancer Society gives very specific advice for staying in the sun. They say to slip, slop, slap, and wrap. You can slip on a shirt, slop on sunscreen, slap on a hat, and wrap on sunglasses. You can also seek shade when there is too much sun exposure.

Don't Fry Day

2. Follow the "rules" of applying sunscreen.

If you are applying sunscreen, according to the American Cancer Society you should:

- Read the label

- Apply at least every 2 hours

- Apply thoroughly

- Pay attention to areas like your face, ears, neck, and arms and other areas that aren't covered by clothing

- Beware of sweat or water washing the sunscreen off

- Beware that sunscreen is just a filter and does not protect you completely from UV Rays

3. Be able to spot skin cancer.

Melanoma Monday
Some people don’t realize that it is important to check their skin regularly for any skin abnormalities. This month make an effort to check your skin and contact a dermatologist if you see anything suspicious. Read the American Cancer Society’s page on Melanoma what to look for when doing a self-examination.

Don't Fry Day Melanoma Spot

Hint: Use the ABCDE rule when remembering what to look for during a self-exam:

- A is for Asymmetry: when one half does not match the other

- B is for Border: when the edges are irregular, jagged, or blurred

- C is for Color: the color has changed or is not the same all over

- D is for Diameter: the spot is larger than 6 millimeters across

- E is for Evolving: the spot is changing in size, shape, or color

4. Take action when needed.

Taking action means talking to your doctor or making an appointment with a dermatologist when you find irregularities. It also means being responsible when spending time in the sun, tanning, going to the lake or beach, or just being outside in general.

5. Encourage others to be safe in the sun!

Don't Fry Day Encourage Friends To Be Safe

The truth is that sometimes we can be neglectful with our skin. Some go to tanning beds, some don't wear sunscreen, and some ignore skin abnormalities. It might help to be dedicated to protecting your skin and telling others to do the same. Share your experiences with others and warn them about sun safety. It may even help to share any skin scares you have had so that they can take skin care as seriously as you are now.

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