Skin Cancer Awareness Month

Buddy Check

Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the United States.

May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month. One of the most important things you can do to prevent skin cancer is to wear sunscreen everyday on your face, neck and the back of your hands.

If you’re spending the day out in the sun, experts say to apply sunscreen 15 to 20 minutes before sun exposure and then re-apply it every one and a half to two  hours and immediately after swimming.

A nurse practitioner, Angie Hamilton, at Paris Community hospital reminds her patients about the importance of wearing sunscreen and especially of not getting a sunburn.

Angie Hamilton says, “Tanning is actually  a scaring of the skin. It’s your body’s way of protecting itself, so it’s not a good way to go about tanning. You will still get color or tan if you use sun screen, you just won’t get burned which is important. The burn rays are what can later on lead to skin cancer.”

 Hamilton tells her patients to look for a sunscreen with an SF of 30 or higher. She likes the “sport ones.”

Also, people who work outside should wear a wide rimmed hat, because a ball cap does not shade and protect the tops of a persons ears or the tip of the nose.
    
And remember, indoor tanning also damages the skin and can lead to skin cancer as well.

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