What’s Up – Can I Get Skin Cancer?
Myths and Facts

Here’s some stuff that a lot of people think—but they’re way wrong!

Myth: I’ll only get skin cancer if I lay out in the sun. NOT!
Fact: Every time you're outside, your skin is exposed to the sun.

Myth: A healthy tan will protect my skin. NOT!
Fact: A tan might look good to some people, but it really means your skin has been damaged. Producing melanin, which makes your skin look darker, is your skin cells’ response to damage from the sun.

Myth: A tanning bed is a safe way to get a tan. NOT!
Fact: A tanning bed produces ultraviolet rays, just like the sun. In fact, a tanning bed can be even more dangerous than the sun. They produce mainly UVA radiation, which penetrates deeper into your skin, while sunlight contains a mix of UVA and UVB and gets filtered by the ozone layer.

Myth: If I wear sunscreen, I can stay in the sun as long as I want. NOT!
Fact: Sunscreens don’t last forever. Here’s a quick way to figure out how long your sunscreen will protect you: multiply the SPF (Sun Protection Factor) by 10. The answer is how many minutes you can stay in the sun—then you need to cover up, go inside, or re-apply your sunscreen.

Myth: I don’t have to worry about the sun in the winter. NOT!
Fact: When you’re outside, your skin is exposed to UV rays from the sun—even when it’s cold, and even when it’s cloudy. Protect your skin 365 days a year!

Myth: I’m going skiing in the mountains, not to the beach, so I don’t have to use sunscreen. NOT!
Fact: In the mountains, the sun’s rays are more intense, because the air is thinner at higher elevations—so there’s less atmosphere to protect you.


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