Archbold Encourages Sun Safety
According to The Skin Cancer Foundation, one in five Americans will develop skin cancer in their lifetime.
As families enjoy more time outdoors in the summer months, Archbold physicians are encouraging people, especially those considered high risk for developing skin cancer, to take special precaution as they vacation, play outdoor sports, and work outside.
“Skin cancer is most commonly diagnosed in people with lighter physical features, such as blue or green eyes, blond or red hair, or lighter skin that burns or freckles easily,” said Archbold Primary Care physician Jackson Hatfield, MD. “Additionally, people with a family history of skin cancer or a personal history of sunburns or indoor tanning are considered high risk for developing the disease. However, anyone regardless of physical features, can develop skin cancer.”
Melanoma is the most aggressive type of skin cancer and one’s risk for developing it doubles after receiving more than 5 sunburns. In addition, about 90 percent of non-melanoma skin cancers are associated with exposure to UV radiation from the sun.
Dr. Hatfield recommends wearing sunscreen, a hat, ultraviolet blocking sunglasses and protective clothing if you plan to be in the sun for extended periods of time. He also recommends talking with your primary care physician about a regular screening regimen for skin cancer.
“Skin cancer is best treated when it’s detected early,” said Dr. Hatfield. “That’s why it’s important to pay close attention to any abnormal or changing spots on your skin. By informing your doctor right away of any skin changes or suspicious places that appear on your skin, you are able to quickly make decisions on the best treatment options that can prevent the spread of cancer to other places in your body.”