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Childhood sun exposure increases skin cancer risk

Exposure to the sun's harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays increases skin cancer risk, which can be dangerous and even deadly, according to the Skin Cancer Foundation.

Suffering one or more blistering sunburns in childhood or adolescence more than doubles a person's chances of developing potentially-deadly melanoma later in life.

However, adopting a complete sun protection regimen can drastically reduce skin cancer risk. There are many things parents and caregivers can do to keep children sun-safe, whether they are at camp, the beach or just in the backyard.

Help children enjoy outdoor activities safely this summer with these tips from The Skin Cancer Foundation:

At Summer Camp

--Remind kids to seek the shade.

--Dress kids in sun-protective clothing.

--Practice sunscreen application beforehand.

At the Beach

--Dress kids in sun-safe swimwear.

--Help children reapply sunscreen frequently, cover them up with clothing, and bring a beach umbrella for kids to play beneath.

--Talk to teens about tanning. Tanning increases skin cancer risk, and leads to wrinkles, blemishes and age spots later in life.

Additional Skin Cancer Prevention Tips

--Avoid sunburn. Sunburns cause long-lasting damage to the skin.

--Keep newborns out of the sun. Sunscreen should be used on babies older than 6 months.

--Practice what you preach. Incorporate these tips into your own lifestyle.

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