A photo of me and my dad when I was 4 years old. My favorite photo ever taken with him.

In 1997 I lost my 46 year old father to Melanoma.  Since then, I have been an advocate for skin cancer awareness.  May is Skin Cancer Awareness month and May 7th, the first Monday of the month, is Melanoma Monday, a day to create awareness around this sometimes life threatening form of cancer.

If you’re one of the people out there who thinks that skin cancer isn’t deadly, I think it is important that you educate yourself.  Here are some staggering statistics from the Melanoma Research Foundation’s website:

Melanoma is the fastest growing cancer in the United States and worldwide.

  • One-in-50 Americans has a lifetime risk of developing melanoma.
  • In 2009 nearly 63,000 were diagnosed with melanoma in the United States, resulting in approximately 8,650 deaths.
  • The projected numbers (according to the National Cancer Institute) for 2012 are even higher with 76,250 diagnosis and 9,180 deaths.
  • The American Cancer Society estimates that the risk of developing invasive melanoma in the United States is 1 in 41 and 1 in 61 for men and women, respectfully. This averages out to approximately a 1 in 50 chance of developing melanoma throughout your lifetime.
  • The incidence of people under 30 developing melanoma is increasing faster than any other demographic group, soaring by 50 percent in young women since 1980.
  • Melanoma primarily affects individuals in the prime years of life, is the most common form of cancer for young adults 25-29 years old and the second most common cancer in adolescents and young adults 15-29 years old.
  • Although melanoma is most common in Caucasians, melanoma can strike men and women of all ages, all races and all skin types. The mean age for diagnosis of melanoma is 50, while for many other cancers it is 65-70 years old.

(source http://Melanoma.org)

On last Friday’s show we welcomed Mary Mendoza  National Director, Volunteer Services for theMelanoma Research Foundation and Jennifer Annet, Integrated Marketing Manager for Coolibar, the most recommended and tested sun protective clothing company in the United States.

During the show we talked about how you can protect yourself from UVA and UVB rays through prevention.  The truth and dangers of Melanoma, a cancer that is rapidly growing in young adults, changes happening in sunscreen that you need to know about, and how you can still enjoy the sun while being safe.


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