Skin Cancer Awareness

Heritage Woods Dekalb

May is Skin Cancer Awareness month.

Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States. It can affect people of every age, gender, and ethnicity, and research shows that one out of every five people will develop a form of the disease by the age of 70.

In other words, the chances you know someone with skin cancer is very high.

The good news is that skin cancer is preventable, and most forms of it are treatable. It’s never too late to assess and reduce your risk, and as the weather warms up and you begin enjoying your time outdoors, there are many things you can do to minimize the chances of developing the disease.

Here are some important guidelines to follow.

Sunscreen Is a Must

Make sure to always apply sunscreen that is rated at least SPF-15 and higher is better. Do this about 20-30 minutes before going outside. Reapply the sunscreen at regular intervals during the day if you expect to be outside for long periods of time.

Cover Your Skin and Use the Shade

Even though you want to catch some sun, clothing is a great defense against harmful UV rays. Alternate covering and uncovering your skin to get the right amount of sun while protecting yourself. Additionally, wearing wide-brimmed hats and sunglasses will protect your eyes, face and ears.

Take advantage of the shade as well. Not only are shaded areas cooler, but they protect you from direct light from the sun’s rays while still allowing you to comfortably enjoy the outdoors.

Watch That Burn

Getting color and tanning your skin is great, but sunburns are not. Take care not to overexpose your skin on warm sunny days. The odds of developing melanoma doubles if you’ve had more than five severe sunburns in your lifetime.

Get a Skin Exam

It’s a good idea to make a skin exam part of your annual checkup. Your physician can help set your mind at ease about any concerns and provide detection and treatment at any stage should a sign of skin cancer emerge.

These are just a few common ways to slow or prevent the development of skin cancer. For more information, visit our website or call 815-787-6500.

Heritage Woods of DeKalb

2626 N. Annie Glidden Rd

DeKalb, IL 60115