Monday, June 6, 2016

Don’t Let the Rays Ruin Your Day!

Summer can be one of the most exciting times of the year. Most students are free from academic priorities, which allows more time for leisure activities. Some, if not most, of these activities occur in outdoor environments, which poses more of threat than many of us believe.

Sun safety is a topic that needs to be closely addressed at all ages due to the physical damage it creates on the body if not taken seriously. The sun's ultraviolet (UV) rays can start damaging the skin in as little as 15 minutes.

Here are some basic tips to help prevent the rays from ruining your day:

  • Protective Sunscreen (15+ SPF)

  • Reapply sunscreen every two hours

  • The suns strongest hours are between 10 AM and 2 PM

  • Protective wear will help (hats, clothing, sunglasses)

  • Avoid tanning beds and sun lamps

Currently skin cancer is the most common cancer in the United States. Melanoma is considered the most deadly form of skin cancer and is projected to have 75,000+ diagnoses in 2016 just in the United States. About 90% of non-melanoma skin cancers are directly correlated to UV rays.

Here are some more facts and statistics on some areas that lead to skin cancer:


  • One person dies of melanoma every hour

  • Melanoma accounts for less than 1% of skin cancer cases, but leads in skin cancer deaths

  • A person's risk for melanoma doubles if he or she has been sunburned 5 times or more 


  • Ultraviolet radiation (UV) is considered a human carcinogen

  • More people develop skin cancer due to tanning than lung cancer due to smoking

  • Individuals that have used a tanning bed 10 or more times in their lives are 34% more likely to develop melanoma 

  • No such thing as a "healthy" tan.

Skin Aging

  • 90% of skin aging is caused by the sun

  • Those who use a sunscreen with 15+ SPF show 24% less skin aging than those who do not


Having fun in the sun does come with a cost if not approached properly. Simply taking these small precautions could help prevent more serious problems later on in life. The sun can be your friend or your enemy, it is up to you!

Questions & Contact Information

If you think the sun has caused a negative effect on your body please set up an appointment today by contacting Health Service at (217) 581-3013. You may also make an appointment online by visiting, login to MyHealth Portal on PAWS, or stop by the Human Services building.

More information regarding sun safety can be found at

Additional Resources