Of the seven most common cancers in the United States, melanoma is the only one that is on the rise.
Now there is a national push for Americans to do whatever they can to prevent skin cancer.
Due to the rise in skin cancer, Surgeon General Boris Lushniak has issued a “Call To Action” to prevent skin cancer.
Lushniak said, “Skin cancer rates are increasing in this country, and it’s become a public health crisis.”
Of the 63,000 people diagnosed with melanoma each year, 9,000 die.
Experts say UV radiation from sunlight or tanning beds is the biggest cause.
Doctors say consumers need to be vigilant about using a broad spectrum sunscreen and reapply it every few hours.
“We have to change the social norms about tanning,” he said. “Tanned skin is damaged skin, and we need to shatter the myth that tanned skin is a sign of health.”
Lushniak also supports legislation banning teenagers from visiting tanning salons.
Lushniak said, “There’s 10 states out there now who have put in legislation that bans the use of indoor tanning facilities for those under the age of 18. We certainly support those measures to be able to protect the youth from a known carcinogen.”
In a statement, the Indoor Tanning Association disputes what many experts say, stating, “there is no consensus among researchers regarding the relationship between melanoma skin cancer and UV exposure wither from the sun or a sunbed.”
The “Call To Action” also calls on city planners to incorporate shady areas in parks and outdoor recreational facilities.