Flip-flops and baseball caps could pose a hidden health risk from skin cancer

April 20, 2017

Melanoma is a cancer that begins in the melanocytes - the cells that produce the skin coloring or pigment known as melanin. Melanin helps protect the deeper layers of the skin from the harmful effects of the sun.

Melanoma is almost always curable when it is detected in its early stages. Although melanoma accounts for only a small percentage of skin cancer, it is far more dangerous than other skin cancers, and it causes the majority of skin cancer deaths.

You can prevent all forms of skin cancer, including melanoma, by avoiding overexposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays.

??? Use a sunscreen with an SPF of least 15 daily. Wearing sunscreen in the early fall is just as important, too.??? Wear protective clothing outdoors, including a wide-brimmed hat, a long-sleeved shirt, and pants. ??? Stay out of the sun during the midday hours (10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.). ??? Use a higher SPF when at higher elevations. ??? Avoid sunbathing and tanning salons. UV rays from artificial sources such as tanning beds and sunlamps are just as dangerous as those from the sun.??? Set a good example for your children by always using sunscreen and wearing protective clothing.

SOURCE Loyola University Medical Center