Buck Melanoma & My "16-year-old Me" Sunburn...

As a high schooler I walked the Ft. Myers beach for hours. It was cloudy, not too hot and the idea of using sunscreen didn't cross my mind.

Later on I was hideous: my skin was purple, even my eyelids were burned so you could barely see my eyes. That night, I'd take a vinegar bath, to reduce the sting.

And while the burn of a severe sunburn eventually goes away, my skin will never forget. And because I was sunburned before age 18, my chances of getting Melanoma double. Strike one.

If you've seen the Dear 16-year-old me video circulating on facebook you may recall:

  • one bad sunburn before you're 18 doubles your chance of developing melanoma.... and other factors put you at risk, like having fair skin, red hair or 50+ moles, or a weakened immune system or family history of skin cancer. Potential Strike two.

My Dad was treated for actinic keratosis (AK) this year. They took a biopsy of the main spot on his face and then treated him using photodynamic therapy. It's like a face peel with an activating agent.

A chemical is put on the spots that are AK and it adheres to them. You sit for about an hour and they put a blue light on it for exactly 16 minutes, 40 seconds, which takes off all the AK spots without cutting. Then your face looks sunburned and you can't go outside for 48 hours. When my dad woke up, his pillow was bloody all the way through to the mattress pad.

Both my mom and dad have had other types of precancer pieces taken off their faces or necks and I believe my grandparents did as well.

- Recently the FDA released new rules and standards regarding sunscreen and its usage.

Read the new rules. For example, sunscreens can no longer claim to be waterproof and sunscreens with "SPF of 2-14 will be required to have a warning stating that the product has not been shown to help prevent skin cancer or early skin aging." Learn more about skin cancer at http://www.skincancer.org/.

- Skin cancer = NOT funny.

This Uncle Buck clip using the word Melanoma makes me laugh though! Watch the trailer. I think my favorite two seconds are when he tries to sit politely and then watching his eyes focus on the principal.

If you can't see the video, watch here http://youtu.be/f6yGAQZqHZQ

And because one mole-related video isn't enough, watch this Austin Powers clip.

Questions for You:

- Which one are you? A twiddler, dreamer, silly heart or jabberbox?
- How do you care for your skin?
- I love quacamole! Do you?

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