Learn From Randy’s Cancerous Mistake

 

3 Ways to Protect Yourself From the Summer Sun

 

Hey, it’s Randy here again. I’m dropping in to share an important message:
Stay out of the sun this summer! A few months ago, I discovered yet another cancerous spot on my body, this time on my forearm. It turned out to be basal cell carcinoma (BCC).

I was able to get the cancer removed, but it reminded me how important it is that we all take care of our skin this summer. BCC is the most common type of cancer, and the Skin Cancer Foundation reports more than 3.6 million cases of it in the U.S. every year. Considering how easy it is to avoid, that’s nuts!

I hope you can learn from my cancerous mistakes. This summer, do as I say, not as I did! Follow these guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to keep your skin cancer-free.

  • Keep your skin covered. This is the easiest way to avoid skin cancer, and you can do it in a lot of ways, including wearing long sleeves, pants, or skirts in the sun; wearing a T-shirt at the pool unless you’re swimming; and/or wearing a hat with a wide brim. The older you get, the more important it is to cover up to protect yourself from UV rays.
  • Get serious about sunscreen. Don’t lay out in the sun without sunscreen. Just don’t do it. Instead, pick what the CDC calls a “broad spectrum” sunscreen that blocks UVA and UVB rays and is at least SPF 15. Then, use it any time you’re out in the sun and reapply it every two hours.
  • Camp out in the shade. If you’re like me and love going outside but don’t love skin cancer, try staying in the shade as much as you can. Sun umbrellas, trees, and other structures that cast shadows are your best friends during the summer.

Last but not least, if you see something funny on your skin, get it checked out by a dermatologist. The BCC on my arm looked just like flaky skin, and I almost didn’t think anything of it. Thankfully I changed my mind, because it turned out to be a big deal. Stay safe out there!

 

-Randy Sklar

 

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