Protect Loved Ones & Yourself from Skin Cancer
With summer just around the corner, and lots of outdoor activity and recreation on the horizon, your friends at St. Vincent Health urge precautions around sun exposure.
Sunburn caused by excessive exposure to sunlight is the primary cause of skin cancer. Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the United States and worldwide. In fact, one in five Americans will develop skin cancer by the age of 65.
The good news? When detected early, the five-year survival rate for melanoma is 99 percent. The even better news? Prevention and protection can avoid skin cancer altogether.
To safeguard yourself and your family this summer, follow the four-point Slip, Slop, Slap, Wrap rules:
SLIP on a shirt and other protective clothing that covers as much skin as possible. Many outdoor clothing manufacturers offer clothing that shields the wearer from the ultraviolet rays of the sun. Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF) is a rating system used for clothing that indicates how effectively fabrics shield skin from both UVA and UVB rays.
SLOP on the sunscreen on all exposed skin. Make sure you use sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 or higher. Don’t skimp. Use a generous amount, even on overcast days. Be sure to reapply after swimming, toweling dry or sweating.
SLAP on a wide-brimmed hat. Remember that a baseball cap doesn’t protect your ears and neck, so use sunscreen there.
WRAP on sunglasses that absorb ultraviolet rays, to protect your eyes and the surrounding skin.
As part of a complete early detection strategy, the Skin Cancer Foundation recommends an annual dermatologist visit for a full-body, professional skin exam. St. Vincent Health’s visiting dermatologist, Dr. Kathryn Echols, will be seeing patients on Thursdays beginning July 1, 2021 when the new hospital opens.