skin-cancer_prevention_dermatology_chicagoHere are some easy to follow tips from The Skin Cancer Foundation that will help keep you safe  from this preventable disease.

  • Seek the shade. Especially between the hours of 10am and 4pm when the sun is at it’s strongest.
  • DO NOT BURN. A person’s risk for melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, doubles if he or she has had 5 or more sunburns at any point in life.
  • Avoid tanning and UV tanning booths.UV radiation from tanning machines is known to cause cancer in humans. Indoor UV tanners are 74% more likely to develop melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, than those who have never tanned indoors.
  • Cover up with clothing. Including a broad-brimmed hat and UV-blocking sunglasses. Clothing can be your most effective form of sun protection, so make the most of it with densely woven and bright or dark colored fabrics which offer the best defense.
  • Use a broad spectrum UVA/UVB sunscreen. Make sure to wear a sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher every day with at least 5% Zinc Oxide. For extended outdoor activity a water resistant broad spectrum UVA/UVB sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher. Click here for our favorites.
  • Apply 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) of sunscreen to your entire body. Do this 30 minutes before going outside. Reapply every 2 hours or immediately after swimming or excessive sweating.
  • Keep newborns out of the sun. This is because their skin is extremely vulnerable. Sunscreens should be used on babies over the age of six months. Children are very sensitive to the ultraviolet radiation. Just one severe sunburn in childhood doubles the chances of developing melanoma later in life.
  • Examine your skin head to toe every month. While self exams should not replace the important annual skin exam performed by a physician, they offer the best chance of detecting the early warning signs of skin cancer. If you notice a change in an existing mole or discover a new one that looks suspicious, see a physician immediately.

See your dermatologist every year for a professional skin exam. Schedule an appointment or call us at 773.276.1100.