The Friday before Memorial Day is designated "Don't Fry Day" by the National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention to encourage sun safety awareness and to remind everyone to protect themselves while enjoying the outdoors. As 1 in 5 Americans will develop skin cancer in their lifetime and there is no such thing as a safe tan, I recommend the following steps to prevent tans or burns this weekend and every day in the sun:
-Seek shade and try to limit time in the sun to before 10 AM and after 3 PM.
-Wear Sun-Protective Clothing, as well as a broad-brimmed hat and sunglasses.
-Generously apply SPF 30 or higher sunscreen to all exposed skin, re-applying it every 2 hours and after swimming or sweating.
-I recommend physical sunscreens (those that contain titanium dioxide and zinc oxide, such as the Neutrogena® Pure & Free® Baby sunscreen stick or lotion) over chemical sunscreens.
For more information, visit http://skincancerprevention.org/. Images above are courtesy of the National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention.
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Kathryn O'Reilly, MD, PhD