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The Incidence of Skin Cancer Has Reached Epidemic Levels
Date:5/11/2010

May is Melanoma/Skin Cancer Detection and Awareness Month

(PRWEB) May 11, 2010 -- May is Melanoma/Skin Cancer Detection and Awareness Month, the perfect time to increase awareness about the importance of sun protection. According to Westchester Health Associates, a clinical affiliate of The Mount Sinai Medical Center, skin cancer is the most common cancer in the United States but it is also one of the most preventable and treatable. Studies cited by the Skin Cancer Foundation have shown that you only receive about 23% of your lifetime sun exposure by the age of 18 -- not 80% contrary to popular belief.

The following facts have been compiled by the experts at Westchester Health Associates to help you become Sun Smart.

The incidence of skin cancer has reached epidemic levels: Recent findings have shown a 300% increase in non-melanoma skin cancer since 1994 and 90% is associated with exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun. In addition, the incidence of melanoma continues to rise. One in five Americans will have skin cancer at some point in their lives. Each year, there are more new cases of skin cancer than the combined incidence of cancers of the lung, prostate and breast.

Just because you do not burn, doesn’t mean you’re not damaging your skin: “It’s a common misconception that burning, not tanning, is damaging to your skin. The reality is there is no such thing as a healthy tan,” says Stuart Zweibel, MD, PHD, a dermatologist with Westchester Health Associates, a clinical affiliate of The Mount Sinai Medical Center. “A tan is actually your body’s attempt to protect itself from the sun’s harmful rays and is a symptom of the sun damage that is occurring beneath the surface of the skin.”

Protect your skin with a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or more: A broad spectrum sunscreen provides p
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