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Skin Smart Campus

Rutgers University has been recognized as a Skin Smart Campus by The National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention.  Ensuring the well-being of our students, we are providing a safe and healthy learning and living environment on and off campus, pledging to keep indoor tanning devices off our campus and our affiliated buildings.  We also promote skin cancer prevention policies and education.

The Indoor Tan-Free Skin Smart Campus Initiative is sponsored by the National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention in response to the 2014 U.S. Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Prevent Skin Cancer which concluded that there is a strong association between increased risk of skin cancer and indoor tanning use.

There is a strong association between increased risk of skin cancer and indoor tanning use.  Ultraviolet (UV) radiation exposure from indoor tanning is completely avoidable which allows for interventions to help reduce skin-cancer related illness and deaths.  Numerous studies have found that skin cancer is the most common type of cancer in the United States, with melanoma as one of the most common cancers diagnosed among young adults. The use of indoor tanning facilities before the age of 35 increases the risk for melanoma by 59 percent. 

 

Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the United States.

  • The two most common skin cancers (basal cell and squamous cell carcinomas) are highly curable but can be disfiguring and costly.
  • Melanoma (the third most common skin cancer) may be deadly.

General risk factors include:

  • Light skin, or skin that burns, freckles, or reddens easily
  • Large number of moles
  • Blue or green eyes
  • Blond or red hair
  • Personal or family history of skin cancer
  • Sun exposure
  • History of sunburns, especially in early life
  • History of indoor tanning
    ○ the average tanning bed gives of 2 to 10 times more UVA radiation than the sun
    ○ using tanning beds before the age of 35 increases a person's risk for developing melanoma by 75%

The majority of skin cancers are caused by exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light and can be prevented with sun safety practices:

  • Seeking shade
  • Wearing:
    Sunscreen
         ▪ Reapplication is necessary every 2 hours and after swimming, sweating or toweling off.
         ▪ Broad spectrum UVA and UVB, SPF 30 or higher
    Protective clothing     
         ▪ Long sleeves/pants that are kept dry and darker colors are best.
    A hat     
         ▪ Wide-brimmed hats are best.
    Sunglasses

For more information, visit these links:


Sources:

1. Skin Cancer. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/cancer/skin/basic_info/sun-safety.htm. Published 2014. Accessed July 11, 2016.
2. Tanning. Skin Cancer Foundation. http://www.skincancer.org/prevention/tanning. Published 2016. Accessed February 14, 2017.

 

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