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Dear Carol

Skin cancer calamity

My mom and I get in big fights every summer because she is paranoid about skin cancer and is constantly trying to smear sunscreen all over me. I’m surprised she doesn’t make me wear a winter coat to the beach.


-Enough Already

Dear E.A.,

A shawl on the shore might be a bit much, but a layer of sunscreen makes good sense. Ever since my husband got a melanoma (yes, skin cancer) on his knee and had to have surgery to get rid of it, he and I have taken the news about skin cancer a lot more seriously.


His dermatologist says a burn is evidence of skin damage. He also says to use a sunscreen that has an SPF factor of at least 15 and that blocks out UVA and UVB light. That way you are protecting yourself from skin cancer and your skin will look smoother longer.


Since you’re tired of running from your mom, take responsibility for your own health and apply a sunscreen before you hit the beach and later again at the beach. And while your winter coat belongs in the closet, how about a summer hat? Try on several and buy the one that looks most fetching. (If you’re desperate for a tan, go for a fake-bake by using a tanning cream. Follow directions, though, or you could end up orange.)

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by Carol Weston | 2/1/2016
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