Wednesday, July 10, 2013
Today the threat of skin cancer does not usually cross young peoples’ minds when they grab their towels and skip the sunscreen to lie out in the sun to get bronze skin. It is normal and very common to bring up in conversation one’s tan, and it is a compliment to hear, “Wow, you look so dark!” As a college student, I know that a nice tan is an expectation of young people during the summer months.
The media and pop culture often glamorize tan skin, encouraging young people to attain a luminous glow. However, skin cancer is a very real danger to my generation. The most aggressive form of skin cancer is melanoma. It develops when skin cells are damaged and mutate, which causes rapid skin cell growth. It is usually pigmented (typically brown or black) and can be seen on the skin. It is estimated that in 2013, 76,690 new cases of invasive melanoma will be diagnosed. Melanoma is also the most common form of cancer in young adults ages 25-29.