Would it be forward if we said you looked radiant? Really – you have a certain glow about you. In fact, we think seeing your gorgeous mug in the mirror every morning should serve as a daily reminder to make sure you’re keeping your skin safe. After all, you wouldn’t want your natural good looks to be ruined by early aging or skin cancer caused by overexposure to the sun, would you? We didn’t think so. So how can you tell if you have the know-how to keep yourself protected in the Arizona sun? Take our Safe Skin Quiz to find out. Have you had your annual skin cancer screening yet? If not, call us at 623-334-4000 to schedule a quick and painless comprehensive skin exam. 1. A base tan can help protect your skin from the sun? □ True □False 2. Melanoma, the most deadly form of skin cancer, most often occurs on: □ Nose and ears □ Arms and hands □ Neck and chest □ Back and legs 3. One bad sunburn in childhood raises your skin cancer risk. □ True □False 4. One in _____ Americans will be diagnosed with skin cancer in their lifetime. □ 5 □ 50 □ 500 5. A sunscreen labeled SPF 30 blocks twice as much UV radiation as one labeled SPF 15. □ True □False 6. People with darker skin can’t get sunburns or skin cancer. □ True □False 7. The best and most thorough annual skin exams are performed by: □ You – just use a mirror and look out for suspicious moles □ Any medical practitioner □ A healthcare provider who has had advanced training in skin cancer medicine and uses a dermascope (special skin microscope) to carefully examine your skin. How did you do? 0-4 correct Yikes! Looks like you got burned. Raise your sun smarts by retaking the quiz. 5-7 correct Great job! Now go share your safe skin knowledge with the rest of the world. Answer Key 1. False. There’s no such thing as a “safe tan” because tanned skin is damaged skin. If you spend any time in the sun (or in a tanning bed), you expose your skin to damaging UV rays which raise your risk for skin cancer and speed up your skin’s aging process. 2. Back and legs. Most skin cancers strike the most exposed parts of your body, such as your face, ears, neck, forearms and hands, however, melanoma most often appears on the upper back for men and the lower legs and upper back for women. That’s why it’s important to use sunscreen all over your body! 3. True. The Skin Cancer Foundation notes that just one blistering sunburn in childhood more than doubles your risk of developing melanoma later in life. Your risk also doubles if you’ve had five or more sunburns at any age. 4. One in five Americans will be diagnosed with skin cancer in their lifetime. According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, skin cancer results in one death per hour. It affects 30% of people over 50-years-old and is the #1 cancer in females between 20 and 30-years old. 5. False. Sun Protection Factor (SPF) describes how long your sunscreen will protect your skin from burning if you apply (and reapply) it correctly. Fifteen minutes is all it takes to start to get a sunburn, so wearing an SPF 15 sunscreen would prevent sunburn for just under 4 hours (15 SPF x 15 minutes until sun burn = 225 minutes, or about 3 hours and 45 minutes). The higher the SPF, the better your protection. 6. False. The sun shines on everyone so we’re all at risk, no matter your skin color. People of color are often diagnosed with skin cancer during later stages because of a myth that only those with lighter skin can develop melanoma and other deadly skin cancers. 7. By a healthcare provider who has advanced training and uses a dermascope. While self checks and professional skin exams are recommended at least once a year, it’s BEST to consult a doctor who has received additional training or education in skin cancer medicine and uses a hand-held microscope called a dermascope.
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