Are you one of the millions of women at risk for melanoma?

With the days getting shorter and sunshine being at a premium, you may be looking for ways to extend your "summer glow," by visiting a tanning bed. Or, since the summer is fading away, you may be tempted to skip the sunscreen while heading outdoors. But by doing these things, you may be putting your health at risk.

Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the nation, according to the American Cancer Society. Although melanoma represents only about 1% of skin cancer diagnoses, it causes a disproportionately large percentage of skin cancer deaths. And the numbers are rising—especially in young women.

Since 2010, the number of melanoma cases that were diagnosed every year has increased by 47%, according to the Skin Cancer Foundation. A large percentage of the jump in melanoma cases is attributed to indoor tanning or excessive exposure to sunlight. Research shows that melanoma rates among women ages 18 to 39 are eight times higher than in 1979, making it the second most common cancer in young women.

The results can be deadly for both women and men. Nearly 7,000 people are expected to die from melanoma this year: 4,610 men and 2,240 women. Don't forget the men in your life when you're examining habits and making lifestyle changes to reduce your risk.

Here’s what you need to know.


Find a doctor

Whether you require an in-person visit or want to consult with a doctor virtually, you have options. Swedish Express Care Virtual connects you face-to-face with a nurse practitioner who can review your symptoms, provide instruction and follow-up as needed. If you need to find a doctor, you can use our provider directory.

Find out what we’re doing to keep you safe when you visit

Related Resources

Skin Cancer Foundation

Study: Recent Changes in the Prevalence of and Factors Associated With Frequency of Indoor Tanning Among US Adults

3 surprising ways to get sunburned

This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professional's instructions.

About the Author

Our philosophy for well being is looking at the holistic human experience. As such, the Swedish Wellness & Lifestyle Team is committed to shining a light on health-related topics that help you live your healthiest life. From nutrition to mindfulness to annual screenings, our team offers clinically-backed advice and tips to help you and your loved ones live life to the fullest.

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