May starts National Skin Cancer/Melanoma Awareness Month campaign. Skin cancer is one of the most common types of cancer, with over one million people diagnosed each year!
Everyone looks forward to the sun returning in the summer, especially for those of us in the upper and midwest climates when the snow melts, school is out, the kids return home, barbecues start up, and we gravitate outside.
But it's also crucial that we pay attention to our bodies and the sun. Yes, absolutely we need that 15 minutes of sun a day to absorb enough vitamin D, but too much sun can have adverse consequences, like skin cancer, the most dangerous of which is melanoma. A cancer that occurs in melanocytes, the cells that give skin its color, melanoma represents about 3% of all skin cancers. However, it has the highest death rate of all types and is more likely to metastasize (spread).
The Facts You Should Know
Although melanoma accounts for only about 4 to 5 percent of all skin cancer cases, it causes most skin cancer-related deaths. However, if detected and treated in its earliest stages, melanoma is often curable.
In men, melanoma is most often found on the area between the shoulders and hips or on the head and neck. In women, melanoma often develops on the lower legs.
The chance of developing melanoma increases with age, yet it is still one of the most common cancers in young adults.
Skin cancer affects one in five Americans, and more than 1 million new cases are diagnosed each year. Of these cases, more than 65,000 are melanoma, a cancer that claims nearly 11,000 lives each year.
Fast Facts About Skin Cancer
- Skin cancer and melanoma account for about 50% of all types of cancers diagnosed combined.
- Skin cancer is one of the more preventable types of cancer.
- More than 90% of skin cancer is causes by excessive exposure to the sun.
- Each hour, 1 person dies from skin cancer.
Skin Cancer and Melanoma Basics
Skin cancer is divided into two categories: melanoma and non-melanoma. Melanoma is a dangerous form of skin cancer. Although serious, non-melanomas are much less life threatening and easier to treat.
Melanoma accounts for 4% od skin cancer cases diagnosed. It is estimated that 62,000 people will be diagnosed with melanoma in 2006. Almost 8,000 are expected to die of melanoma this year.
There are two common types of non-melanoma skin cancer: basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma
Symptoms of Skin Cancer
- A small lump (spot or mole) that is shiny, waxy, pale in color, and smooth in texture.
- A red lump (spot or mole) that is firm
- A sore or spot that bleeds or become crusty. Also look for sores that don't heal.
- Rough and scaly patches on the skin.
- Flat scaly areas of the skin that are red or brown.
- Any new growth that is suspicious
If you suspect that a lump, spot, or mole may be suspicious of skin cancer, see your doctor. When detected early, it is highly treatable.
The ABCs of early melanoma detection
Melanoma appears most frequently on the trunk area in fair-skinned men and on the lower leg in fair-skinned women. In dark-skinned people, melanoma appears most frequently on the palms, the soles of the feet and the skin under nails. If caught early, melanoma is potentially curable.
Be aware of change and new growths on your body. The ABCs of melanoma provide a good guideline:
• Asymmetry of lesion: Are the sides of the lesion different? • Border irregularity: Are the edges notched as opposed to smooth? • Color variation: Is the lesion a mixture of black, blue, red and white? • Diameter: Is the diameter greater than six millimeters? (Most melanomas are larger than the head of a pencil.) • Evolution: Is the lesion growing in width or height? • Feeling: Has the sensation around a mole or spot changed?
These recommendations serve as a guide. Promptly show your doctor any suspicious skin area, non-healing sore or change in a mole or freckle. If exam results suggest cancer, more extensive diagnostic tests should be conducted.
Natural and Free from Harmful Chemicals
Good Day Sunshine Sunscreen, developed by local natural health and beauty care leader Kassie Kuehl, is a chemical-free sunscreen optimal for sensitive or traumatized skin and safe for children.
“Losing my 24 year old brother to skin cancer, I have grown well aware of the many underlying potential causes,” Kuehl said. “Unlike chemical sunscreens, I love that nature can provide remarkable ingredients that reflect and scatter away both UVA and UVB rays from your body by forming a physical barrier, without irritating or clogging your pores.”
Additional key benefits that set Good Day Sunshine Sunscreen apart from commercialized sunscreens:
* True broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection
* Safe for toddlers and children
* Non-chemical sunscreen
* Moisturizing and healing properties
* PABA-free and fragrance-free
* Light and smooth formulation ideal for daily use and can be applied under makeup
* Formulated for skin sensitive to traditional sunblocks and post-treatment patients
* Formulation of 5% zinc and 5% titanium
Why add the ingredients of GREEN TEA?
Numerous studies now show that green tea is a powerful antioxidant, especially used on the skin. When applied topically, green tea is highly capable of assisting in skin damage reduction and sun radiation. In short, green tea helps protect your skin’s cells by providing antioxidant protection.
* FREE of chemical laden fragrances…NON-zero….zilch.
* FREE of parabens (harsh chemical or any harsh preservatives)..
* FREE of Xenoestrogens!
Active Ingredients: Titanium Dioxide 5% & Zinc Oxide 5%
Reference: Cancerwise.com and cancerabout.com