Protect Your Kids From Sun Danger

One serious burn in childhood increases skin cancer risk

Please note: This article was published more than one year ago. The facts and conclusions presented may have since changed and may no longer be accurate. And "More information" links may no longer work. Questions about personal health should always be referred to a physician or other health care professional.

SUNDAY, JUNE 9, 2002 (HealthDayNews) -- It takes just one blistering sunburn in childhood to increase a kid's risk of developing melanoma or some other skin cancer later in life.

About 1 in 5 children in the United States today will grow up to have some form of skin cancer, say experts at Texas Children's Hospital in Houston. Parents need to think about that as summer arrives and children spend most of their time outside in the sun.

The experts offer these tips to protect children from the sun's harmful rays:

  • Make sure they wear sunscreen year-round.

  • Reapply their sunscreen every two hours when they are swimming or playing sports.

  • Teach them to wear protective clothing, including a wide-brimmed hat and UV-protective sunglasses. Remind them to head for the shade to reduce sun exposure.

  • A full-body skin examination should be a routine part of a child's health care.

More information

To learn more about skin cancer, visit the Skin Cancer Foundation.

SOURCE: Texas Children's Hospital, news release, May 2002

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