Skin Cancer: 4 Reasons You're at Risk
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- 1. You assume your doctor is looking out for suspicious moles.
- 2. You love being an athlete, but you're not so great about using sunscreen.
- 3. You've gotten a "base" tan from a sunlamp or at a tanning salon.
- 4. You don't take a sunburn seriously.
- Do-It-Yourself Skin Exam
2. You love being an athlete, but you're not so great about using sunscreen.
"Our research shows that athletes don't put it on most commonly because they simply forget," says Philip Cohen, MD, assistant team physician at Rutgers University Sports Medicine in Piscataway, New Jersey. If you do remember the sunblock, you probably don't reapply it. "Yet anyone who plays or trains in the sun -- golfers, tennis players, swimmers -- is at greater risk, since sun exposure is responsible for most skin cancer," says Karen Burke, MD, PhD, a dermatologist and research scientist at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York City. Compounding the damage that extended time in the sun does is the fact that water, snow, concrete, and sand all reflect ultraviolet rays, so the same rays hit you twice, increasing harmful exposure by as much as 25 to 90 percent.
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