How to Prevent Skin Cancer All Year

Learning how to prevent skin cancer requires focusing your efforts each and every day on protecting your skin. If you can keep your skin healthy, you will be able to keep yourself healthy more easily.

Wear sunscreen every day that's rated at SPF 15 or higher. Even areas of your skin that you don't think will be exposed should get sunscreen. You should apply from head to toe even when you don't plan to spend time outside. The sun's rays can do damage through car or office windows, too.

Make sure you're applying SPF the right way-you should apply 1 ounce, the size of a golf ball or one full shot glass, of sunscreen all over your body 30 minutes before you go outside.

Reapply often. Every two hours is a good rule to follow.

Don't forget that skin cancer hot spots include your hands, feet, nose, scalp, part, ears, neck and even your lips, which is the most common spot for skin cancer to occur. If you typically neglect those areas, try applying sunscreen to those spots first. Eventually, you'll change your routine so you won't ever forget.

Don't allow yourself to burn.

Avoid the sun at peak daytime hours between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. If you decide to spend time outside, seek shade.

Never visit tanning booths. They're now classified as a definite cause of cancer.

Stay covered as much as you can. Consider wearing UPF sun-protective clothing or bathing suits. A wide-brimmed hat will help to shade the face, neck, ears and head. Don't forget UV-blocking sunglasses. Look for a pair that blocks both UVA and UVB rays. The over-sized wraparound styles that are fashionable right now are tops for protection.

Don't allow your baby to be exposed to the sun before the age of six months. Baby skin is extra sensitive, but sunscreen shouldn't be used until six months of age at the earliest.

Know your skin. You should examine it for any changes once per month.

Visit your doctor for a skin cancer screening once a year-your doctor may spot something you can't see or didn't think looked strange.

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