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Summer & Skin Cancer

Sun isn't the only challenge for those living with skin cancer but it does pose its own set of issues and hurdles and those tend to grow during the summer months when so many social activities are centered around sun-filled activities.

How do you handle the extra sun during the summer months? What tips do you have for those who are new to skin cancer and facing months of sun? How do your behaviors change - and how have they not?

  1. Even though I am in remission from Stage 4 melanoma, I try not to go outside at all in the peak sunshine hours. When I do have to go out, I make sure all of my skin that is exposed is covered in sunscreen, I wear UV clothing (preferably a light hoodie with a hat), and sunglasses. I never wear a swimsuit or shorts in the heat of the day, ever. If I swim, it has to be early in the morning, late in the evening, or at night. I am pretty much becoming a vampire.I never knew how dangerous the sun was until I began this battle which will last the rest of my life.

    1. This is a unique challenge living in Buffalo, New York. We have short summers here and when the weather is nice, I just want to get outside. This is why being diligent about my sun regimen is so important. I make it a point to add sun protection to what I do when I get dressed. It is now part of the process. Shower, brush teeth, put on deodorant and sun screen. Put on trousers, shirt, hat. It has become routine and I treat it as such. My tip is to begin with a checklist of to-do's and then watch those new behaviors become habits and second nature. Soon you will have to consciously have to "not" protect yourself. Hope this helps.

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        1. "I set the alarm on my phone for every 2 hours to reapply sunscreen when I’m outside" - from community member Karen on Facebook! - Nina, Team

          1. Great advice! I lose track of time when I'm doing yard work!!

          2. I think I lose track, too. I get distracted and focus on the immediate thing that I am doing. If I burn, it's because I don't reapply when I should. Scott moderator

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