Skin Cancer and Melanoma
I found out first-hand skin cancer and melanoma is a Rated “G” General Audiences disease. Before I was diagnosed with Melanoma, I thought Skin Cancer & Melanoma only impacted “old” people. I didn’t consider 27 old but, if you do, then maybe you’re right. At the time of my diagnosis my maternal great- aunt was also diagnosed with Melanoma, and her condition was much worse than mine. She passed away just three months after her diagnosis. In addition to her there have been several others in my family afflicted with skin cancer, including my maternal grandmother, older brother and younger sister.
My point is that skin cancer and Melanoma can strike at any age, rendering the protection of our skin from the sun’s harmful UV Rays crucial. Simply put, your age doesn’t matter to skin cancer at all whatsoever. Make no mistake-you’re susceptible to it at any time from cradle to grave.
To further elaborate on the false perceptions regarding skin cancer and age, I’d like to share with you the painful story of Brianna and Addison Cox. They were a mother and (baby) daughter who were diagnosed with Melanoma in 2011. Brianna was in her early 30’s, and little Addison was just three months old when they were diagnosed with Stage IV metastasized malignant Melanoma. While both lost their brave battles, there was a silver lining. Their legacies have brought significant recognition to this disease itself and, equally important, its willingness to ignore the ages of its victims. As a result of this light being shed, more and more pediatric patients are being diagnosed. And the more that occurs, the more funds will pour into the medical community to research this terrible disease. And that’s what typically, ultimately, causes the demise of these afflictions. We can only hope.
In the interim, there’s still much that we can do to stave off this affliction. Step one is to educate ourselves. While many sunscreen companies are appropriately advertising toward the warmer months, there are other seasons to which its marketing is wholly insufficient. What would happen to your oral health if you stopped brushing your teeth for two or three seasons? It wouldn’t lead to anything good, and your body could possibly suffer other issues as well. It’s the same thing with not protecting your skin year ‘round. While the results may not be noticeable at first, the ramifications could appear without warning.
If we teach our children and their elders to use and re-apply sunscreen and to alert themselves to do so wearing Sundicators daily, we’re decreasing the odds of this disease taking away anyone’s quality of life; or their lives at all for that matter. The simple facts are that Sunscreen is inexpensive, and shade is both free and never hard to find. The only actual thing that’s hard to find is a legitimate excuse not to use it. Every life we save through education is a tremendous victory.
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- A Guide to Skin Cancer and Melanoma - November 6, 2017
- Autumn’s Arrival: Sun Safety Reminder - October 11, 2017
- Students: Back to School Skin Protection - September 20, 2017
- An Explosion of Skin Cancer Diagnosis in the 21st Century - July 24, 2017
- Familial Malignant Melanoma: Family Tragedies - June 12, 2017
- Melanoma Monday – May 1, 2017 and every Monday Thereafter… - May 1, 2017