• Summer is here and it's skin cancer prevention awareness month. Do you wear sunscreen regularly, regardless of what type of cancer you have?

    Asked by GregP_WN on Tuesday, May 5, 2015

    Summer is here and it's skin cancer prevention awareness month. Do you wear sunscreen regularly, regardless of what type of cancer you have?

    My doctor told me to stay out of the sun, but that's not practical for me. My wife bought me a big floppy hat to wear so I wear that when I can remember it and spray on some sunscreen, again, when I can remember it.

    18 Answers from the Community

    18 answers
    • cam32505's Avatar
      cam32505

      If I'm going to be in direct sunlight, I put sunscreen on. I'm lax when it comes to cutting the grass. Putting sunscreen on means having grass stick to my skin, so I just try to get done and out of the sun.

      about 6 years ago
    • cllinda's Avatar
      cllinda

      My husband has always been the reminder to put on sunscreen whenever we are outside for a while. Almost to the point of nagging. But after going through breast cancer, I can understand why he's so pushy with the sunscreen. And his mom had Lupus, which was aggravated by the sun, so that's where he got the urge to protect us.
      One thing to remember is to buy fresh sunscreen every summer. Don't use the stuff from last year because it has lost some of it's sunblocking power. Throw it out and buy new.
      That's what I need to do this week.

      about 6 years ago
    • TXHills' Avatar
      TXHills

      I also wear a sun hat, which is actually spf 50. There are sun shirts and other clothes that are UPF 50 or more. I just bought a short-sleeved one to wear swimming in the lake.
      My mom has had skin cancer twice and I have to be careful with my radiation field, also. I try to take it seriously, avoid the sun between 10 and 3, and wear my hat, at least.

      about 6 years ago
    • BoiseB's Avatar
      BoiseB

      I never was one to put on sunscreen. I have a coppery colored skin that never changed color no matter how much sunlight it was exposed to (unlike my siblings who look like my mother) So I never wore a hat or put on sunscreen. All that changed when I got cancer, Now I wear a wide rimed hat and a light long-sleeved shirt. I also avoid direct sunlight, I am out doors in the morning and late afternoon and early evening. I have been told I should that I should wear sunscreen under the light shirt but I don't. Sunscreen should be worn on the face in the winter also

      about 6 years ago
    • Jalemans' Avatar
      Jalemans

      Yes, I am like you Greg... I TRY to remember! I am so pale that I can sunburn through lightweight clothing. I should try harder.

      about 6 years ago
    • Carool's Avatar
      Carool

      I hate sunscreen: greasy, drippy, goes into my contacts. I stay out of the sun as much as possible. Wear sunglasses. I never liked the sun - well, "never" except when I was a foolhardy teenager (redundant) and baked for hours as I sought a sun tan. Luckily, that behavior ended when I turned twenty and started being scared of melanoma.

      about 6 years ago
    • Janetspringer's Avatar
      Janetspringer

      I try to remember. I don't like the smell of sunscreen, but I do have lotion and makeup with sunscreen.

      about 6 years ago
    • Lillyzz's Avatar
      Lillyzz

      I try to remember, but I don't do it daily. It's not so much of an issue until spring/summer in Mass. If I am in direct sunlight I wear sunscreen and a hat.

      about 6 years ago
    • meyati's Avatar
      meyati

      And I ended up in the ER with blood oozing like sweat out of my pores, which made me hysterical about chemicals on my face. I was the only one in Okinawa that wasn't wearing my hat. I hate wearing it while driving, as I can't see well, then I forget to put it on and leave it in the truck.

      about 6 years ago
    • geekling's Avatar
      geekling

      Nope. I like the sun. It warms me and makes vitamin D as it hits my skin.

      I don't stay exposed long enough to burn. I have a great hat. I have a shirt to cover up. If I feel to warm, I get under shade.

      I remember a lecture, while I was treating, about the six of one and half dozen of the other in that the sunscreens were all full of chemicals which could cause cancer so one could simply choose their risk.

      I remember, when I was healthy and young, skiing on a glorious and sunny day after a snow storm and deciding to quit mid morning. I did not know why but I just did not want to ski any more and tickets are expensive so I was sorta miserable to myself. Until that evening when we got home and, although I looked like a raccoon, unlike my then partner, I was not burned.

      about 6 years ago
    • Ivy's Avatar
      Ivy

      I had a skin cancer removed about 25 years ago, so I'm careful. Do get a whole body skin check-up with a dermatologist annually, because they'll catch problems before they are too serious. Additionally, my doctor recommends a particular line of products for sensitive skin, Cerave. If you use their morning skin cream with sun protection, you can put makeup over it after a few minutes. The sun protective lotions and creams for the body mostly irritate my skin, so don't forget to wash them off with soap and water later. Even if you shower but forget to attack those lotion-covered areas, they may itch later or be uncomfortable.

      Also, hats are important. Even my husband, born in India, has started wearing a sun protective hat when he mows the lawn. He's not worried about getting too much tan! However, anyone can get too much sun. He likes the lighter weight fabric, cooler, washable, vented rim-type sun protective hats that are sold in stores that sell casual clothing for fishing enthusiasts. I prefer a wide brim hat with SPF 50-100 if out for any length of time. There are lots of good brands, and some come in sizes for those of us who don't like one-size-fits-all. Some of the brands are Sun Precautions, Sunuva, Tuga, Coolibar, and so on. If you do a search on the web, you'll find them. Many of the brands started in Australia, which seems to be more informed than we are. Try not to be put off by the cost. If you plan ahead, you can find sun-proof hats and clothing at the end of the season when it's on sale.

      If you have children or grandchildren, please start them off with sun-proof clothing before their skin is damaged. I grew up in the South before sunscreen was invented. I have extremely fair skin, which didn't match my adoptive family, so I had many serious burns. If you buy rash guard shirts (with SPF 50 or above) as part of their swim sets, children can jump in the pool or ocean with those on. The rash guard clothing adds a little expense, but it's certainly better than worrying about skin cancer for the rest of their lives. Do read the fine print, as some manufacturers are labeling tops as "rash guards," even if they didn't use sun-protective fabrics. Ordinary fabrics help a little, but not very much.

      I purchase the swim sets for my grandchildren, including sun-proof coverups. This means that much less lotion or cream is needed to cover up exposed skin because less skin is exposed. This is a blessing for those who hate sun-screen lotions or whose skin reacts poorly. There are now beginning to be more lines of clothing for adults, too, for this purpose.

      I like to swim in the summer, but I wait until 4:00 in the afternoon before jumping into an outside pool. If you check the UV levels for your location, you'll see that they drop off significantly at that time of day. If you go to this website and enter your zip code, you can check out the UV levels for your location. http://www.uvawareness.com/

      This may be more than you wanted to know, but it should be helpful. I don't have external radiation damage as part of my cancer treatment, but perhaps this will be useful for those of you in that situation. Try not to be self-conscious with the hat, sunscreen, sitting in the shade, and so on. Perhaps one day everyone will catch on!

      about 6 years ago
    • meyati's Avatar
      meyati

      The blood was oozing from the sunscreen on my radiation area- It would have been nice if the dermatologists, PCPs, flight surgeons, general surgeons, plastic surgeons, or ENTs had removed my skin cancer before it became a mother ship of incurable tumors. But you can't tell a doctor how to practice medicine. Mine is also called -Fisherman's cancer- because the water reflects UV rays to under your nose- and only wearing a Burka could have prevented this. This is also activated by heat-wielding, firefighters, working with steel and glass making furnaces, those who use flame throwers-lots of servicemen got this cancer after WW II,

      At least I can say that i had fun getting my cancer----fishing from GA and FL swamps and sea coasts to Hawaii and from Canada to Mexico.

      about 6 years ago
    • meyati's Avatar
      meyati

      I'll make the comment that high altitude makes UV rays worse-then I try to not go out until about 5 in summer. Then I get my sleep all messed up from being inside the afternoons, when I'm tired. I had lots of stress last summer like getting caught in a 3 way shoot out while walking my coonhound--I was able to outrun the cops and the original gun fighters. But the continuing stress and trying to stay out of the sun just about gave me a nervous break down. I don't want to sleep all day. It [email redacted] me off. The feeling of cloth on my arms and shoulders drive me crazy-I don't wear watches or bracelets. I don't know if this summer started any better. I got on a United to Tokyo-- only 7 hours late. Nobody knew where we were. UA said an agent would meet us in Tokyo with hotel and connecting flights. The agent told us to go catch a bus- we went out in the rain and a bus wouldn't take us anywhere-no paperwork-no vouchers. I tracked down a supervisor and an elder over 70 has certain protections. @ the hotel-I couldn't use yahoo or other Email, because I was in Japan my phone numbers didn't work. The hotel operator kept hanging up on me when I tried to make a collect call with a VISA card. My brother spent 24 hours at the airport waiting for me- and calling my home, United and Japanese airlines. In the morning a desk clerk finally understood what I meant-he'd heard that from other Americans, Koreans,, etc. and he called my brother with my arrival time. So maybe, I'll handle this summer better. So, basically I was on a flight with about 200 other lost people.

      about 6 years ago
    • Ejourneys' Avatar
      Ejourneys

      I used a lot of sunscreen last year while I was in treatment. Chemo made my skin very sensitive to the sun, so I slathered it on even for a half-hour drive to the county seat. I also wore broad-brimmed hats and long-sleeved shirts (buttoned all the way up) at the height of the Florida summer.

      These days I try to avoid being outdoors except for early and late in the day. If I do yard work, I use my broad-brimmed hat and long sleeves/long pants. In past years for yard work, when the sun was particularly strong, I also draped a towel over myself and used binder clips to attach it to my clothes.

      about 6 years ago
    • Clyde's Avatar
      Clyde

      Always. 24/7, 365. You can pick up rays anytime during the year. Easiest way is to find a good moistureizer with a decent spf.

      about 6 years ago
    • Clyde's Avatar
      Clyde

      Greg, I feel this is the same post you ran last year. It seems very familiar.

      about 6 years ago
    • BoiseB's Avatar
      BoiseB

      You should also always wear sunglasses. I learned that the hard way when I went snowblind in college. An after effect of chemo/radiations is a sensitivity to light

      about 6 years ago
    • Reggi's Avatar
      Reggi

      I wear spf 30 and try to be more aware and put on everyday before going outside. after having melanoma and fair skin, you just have to do it. and I wear a scarf on my neck to keep covered.
      hope this helps

      about 6 years ago

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