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Be Sun Smart!

Skin cancer is the most common of all cancers. Melanoma accounts for less than five percent of skin cancer cases. However, it causes most skin cancer deaths. Melanoma can often be found early. Everyone can do things to find this cancer early, when it is curable. For information about skin cancer screenings, click here.

Self Exams: Check your own skin about once a month; know the patterns of moles, freckles, and other marks so that you will notice any changes. Spots on the skin that change in size, shape, or color should immediately be seen by a doctor. Any unusual sore, lump, blemish, marking, or change in the way an area of the skin looks or feels should also be checked by a doctor.

Some ways to reduce your risks:

  • Limit UV exposure-Avoid being outdoors in sunlight too long, especially in the middle of the day
  • Protect your skin with clothing- Long-sleeved shirts, long pants or skirts are the most protective
  • Wear a hat- a hat with at least a 2-3 inch brim all around is good because it protects the neck, ears, eyes, forehead, nose and scalp
  • Use sunscreen-SPF 15 or higher, reapply often and after swimming or sweating

Wear sunglasses, stay in the shade, and protect children. For more information on these and other tips, contact Kirkland Cancer Center at 541-5087 or visit the American Cancer Society website at

Learn more about skin cancer by utilizing our A.D.A.M. health information encyclopedia.

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