Things to remember during Skin Cancer Awareness Month
Clothes might be a better sunscreen than sunscreen itself. May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month and as you may know, the sun is strongest between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Researchers now say that a physical barrier seems to be more effective in blocking UV radiation following a study that looked at moles. There is sun-protective clothing on the market that has what's called the "UV Protection Factor," which measures how much protection the clothing will give you. Dermatologist Dr Edward Lee, of Slocum Dickson Medical Center, says you want 30 or higher. "Just regular clothing will also protect and we usually recommend something very bright or dark, such as red or black, versus white, which does not absorb the UV radiation as well." Dr. Lee also suggests UV-blocking sunglasses and a wide brim hat that covers your ears, which is the most common area for skin cancer. Most importantly, Dr. Lee recommends an SPF of 30 or higher. He says you want to buy sunscreen that is labeled "Broad Spectrum" because that protects against UVA and UVB rays.