May Marks Skin Cancer Awareness Month, Officials Share Prevention Advice

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BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — With May in full swing, so is Skin Cancer Awareness Month, a time in which dermatologists bring attention to the most common cancer in the United States.

The American Academy of Dermatology Association says the first Monday of May marks Melanoma Monday, a day that's focused on raising awareness for the deadliest form of skin cancer. According to officials, around 9,500 people in the U.S are diagnosed with skin cancer every day, affecting one in five Americans in their lifetime.

The AAD also says that skin cancer is one of the most preventable cancers, as noticing early signs of the disease can save lives. SPOT Skin Cancer is a program with the AAD, that in addition to raising awareness, raises funds, provides grants for shade structures, and offers lifesavings events that include free screenings.

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Dermatologists at the AAD recommend that people following the basics to protect themselves against skin cancer by doing regular self-examinations, looking for spots concerning the ABCDE's: asymmetry, borders that are irregular, color variations, diameters usually greater than the size of a pencil eraser, and evolving spots looking different from the rest, changing in shape.

The AAD says skin cancer prevention steps include staying in the shade on sunny and even cloudy days, wearing sun protective clothing, and applying broad-spectrum water-resistant sunscreen that's 30 SPF or higher.

WBZ's Shari Small (@ShariSmallNews) reports.

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