One in 60 Americans will develop melanoma skin cancer in their lifetime. This cancer strikes the young as well as the old, and it's serious. Caught early it's usually curable, but when it's caught late it can be deadly. Sunburns and tanning put a person at risk for melanomas. Sunburns and tanning are pretty common, especially in kids and teenagers. This is what makes melanoma so sad, but it's also the part that I find hopeful. If we can get this message out there then we can do something to protect ourselves and the people we love! No one needs a tan to have a great summer or fantastic vacation. No one needs a tan to look beautiful. These are deadly choices. Help change the old way of thinking, tans are passe. Watch this moving, well done and highly motivational video and share it with the people you care about. People are posting it on their Facebook page. It's making it's way across the web. Be part of that movement, let's get the message out, people need to hear it right now and let's make that happen. Melanoma isn't something remote, like being struck by lightening, it will happen to someone you know. 1 in 60 Americans will develop melanoma in their life time. That 1 in 60 is more likely to be you or someone you care about if:
- You have many moles (ie. 50 or more), large moles or irregular moles
- You have a history of blistering sunburns
- You have ever used tanning beds
- You have a close blood relative who has had melanoma
- You are in the upper middle economic class (go figure!)
- You are a Caucasian with fair skin, especially a red head or blond or have blue or green eyes
- Your immune system is suppressed for any reason
- Don't tan or sunburn-ever!
- Get a full skin exam, do it soon if you have the risk factors I mentioned above
- Learn the signs of melanoma and do your own monthly self skin exams
Stop tanning, Help someone you love to stop tanning Get a full skin examReferences: Rigel DS., Epidemiology of melanoma, Semin Cutan Med Surg. 2010 Dec;29(4):204-9.