As we head into the Summer months, health officials say protecting yourself from the sun’s intense rays with protective sunscreen, clothing, and eyewear is key. The goal is ensure Floridians do not get skin cancer and if they do, detect it early.
As its National Melanoma/Skin Cancer Detection Month, Leon County Health Department Spokesman Chris Tittel says the public should be aware of the three kinds of skin cancer caused by sun overexposure:
“Basal cells and squamous cell carcinomas are curable,” he said. Melanoma, even though it’s less common, is more dangerous and can sometimes, can result in death. So, we’re very, very concerned about people making sure that they’re protecting themselves against the sun.”
If you see an irregularly shaped mole or spot on your skin, a mole or spot with uneven color, a mole that’s larger than a pea, or changes in an existing mole or spot—Tittel says contact your health provider.
“We encourage people in an effort to avoid contracting skin cancer to protect themselves against harmful rays of the sun,” Tittel added. “We encourage people to use what we call broad spectrum sunscreens with an SPF factor higher than 15.”
If you’re going in and out of the water, the public is encouraged to reapply that sunscreen every two hours or after contact with the water. Tittel says residents should seek shade when the sun is the strongest, wear hats and protective clothing and eyewear, and avoid indoor tanning.
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