Growing up in the 1960s and 1970s, we had a different relationship with the sun. We didn’t think we looked good or “healthy” unless we had a tan. Ironic, isn’t it? I spent many hours in my teens and 20s laying out in the sun – burn, peel, repeat…until the tan took hold.
Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer but, thankfully, it is also one of the most treatable when it’s detected early. While survival rates are high, most skin cancer patients quickly that you’re not completely out of the woods once a skin cancer has been removed. Not only do your chances of recurrence increase, but preventative measures and changes to your daily routine are unavoidable. Just ask ABC News anchor Michelle Charlesworth.
Even after hearing that women who have ever been indoor tanning are six times more likely to be diagnosed with melanoma in their 20s than those who have never done so, it’s hard to believe skin cancer can happen at such a young age. Most young indoor tanners probably don’t believe it can happen to them.
In the summer of 2006, Kevin noticed a mole on his shoulder that seemed to have changed colors, so he went to see a dermatologist. A biopsy determined that the mole was a malignant melanoma.
When Nicole Kinnunen started dating her husband-to-be, she spotted a large, strange-looking mole on his leg. He told her it was nothing. Eleven years after they married, that melanoma left their family without a husband and father.
Last Thanksgiving, The Skin Cancer Foundation staff shared what we were thankful for. This year, we asked our online community of skin cancer survivors to tell us what they’re grateful for this holiday season. Here are a few of their responses.
When the sun starts to set, the countdown begins. The children excitedly check an ultraviolet (UV) light meter, waiting for it to register zero.