The Skin Cancer Foundation Journal

MAY 2015

The 2012 edition of The Skin Cancer Foundation Journal features medically reviewed, reader-friendly articles such as tanning, the increasing incidence of skin cancer diagnoses among young women, & the prevalence of melanoma among white males over 50.

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Page 64 of 115

YOUR CHECKLIST FOR SAFE PLAY IN THE SUN While it's not always possible with tournament schedules and difficult-to-secure court reservations, try to avoid the sun during its peak hours between 10 AM and 4 PM. Play indoors when you can. Play in the shade when you can. Use a sweat-resistant or water-resistant sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher. There are many non-greasy, sweat-resistant formulas on the market today designed for athletes. Sunscreen sticks and sprays are a good option if you don't want to get the product on your hands. Apply about one ounce of sunscreen 30 minutes before heading outdoors and reapply at least every two hours. Sunscreens applied to the forehead can drip into the eyes and cause irritation due to heavy sweating during tennis. Therefore, be very judicious about using sunscreens on the forehead, and apply any sunscreen especially well ahead of playing so that it fully absorbs. A wide-brimmed hat and wide-framed sunglasses can help provide a lot of protection for the forehead. Make sure your tennis grip is up-to-date. Older grips lose traction faster after absorbing sweat and sunscreen. Sun-protective clothing is important, too: Again, a wide-brimmed hat is ideal, but at least wear a baseball cap or visor. Your sunglasses should keep out 99% or more of UV radiation. If you can stand to on the court, also wear long-sleeved shirts and sweatpants; recently, sun-protective clothing options for athletes have expanded to include lightweight, sweat-wicking versions that not only reflect UV but can keep you even cooler than if you weren't wearing them. For those who still prefer "tennis whites," remember that basic cotton T-shirts provide limited sun protection. However, there are many white fabric versions today that employ optical brighteners or special dyes that are highly sun-protective. A sun-protective bandanna or foreign legionnaires hat can be worn to protect the neck. Know Your ABCDE's for Early Melanoma Detection Melanoma can be a deadly disease. But if it's caught early, before spreading to the lymph nodes or other organs, average overall 5-year-survival is 98%. 1 Thus, it's important to be proactive about checking your skin every month (from head to toe) for changes that can be early signs of a melanoma or other skin cancers. It may be difficult to tell which moles, brown spots or growths on your skin are harmless and which need to be examined by your doctor. The ABCDE's of melanoma offer a guide to warning signs of the disease. A symmetry If you draw a line through a mole or spot and the halves don't match up, it could be a warning sign. B order A benign mole tends to have smooth, even borders. The borders of an early melanoma tend to be uneven. C olor Most benign moles are uniform in color. Having a variety of colors is a warning sign. A red, white or blue mole is also a warning sign. D iameter Melanomas are usually larger in diameter than a pencil eraser (6 mm or ΒΌ"). But they sometimes may be smaller when first detected. E volving Benign moles appear the same over time. Be on the lookout for moles that change in size, shape, color, elevation, or another trait and any new symptoms such as bleeding, itching or crusting. These are all warning signs. CUT THIS OUT AND SHARE IT WITH A FRIEND! 63 References on pages 105-107. BENIGN MALIGNANT Common Sense Sun Protection for Tennis Players

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