Just One Blistering Sunburn = A Double Risk of Developing Skin Cancer
Thursday, July 5, 2012
ST. PAUL, Minn. - As the hottest weather of the year continues to envelop Minnesota, here is a warning to those who are out and about in the sunshine. Roseville dermatologist Mohiba Tareen says it takes very little to increase your odds of developing skin cancer.
"Even one blistering sunburn doubles your risk for having skin cancer. But really, no tan is a safe tan. Even a little bit of bronzing indicates damage to the DNA."
The doctor adds that the best way to protect yourself if you're out in the sun is by regularly applying a broad-spectrum sunscreen.
"It should be SPF 30 or greater, according to the American Academy of Dermatology. Apply about 1 to 2 ounces, depending on how much of your body is exposed, and reapply that every two hours."
Tareen recommends getting checked by a doctor right away if you have any changing or irregular moles. Even without mole changes, she suggests having your skin examined once a year.
"If your primary doctor is comfortable with doing a skin check, that's great, and we really encourage that. But if your primary doctor is not comfortable, if you have a lot of atypical moles - a lot of irregular spots - really, you should be checked by a dermatologist."
According to the American Cancer Society, each year more than 1,000 new cases of melanoma are reported in Minnesota, and more than 100 related deaths.
More information on skin cancer is available at www.cancer.org.
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