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The Three Types of Skin Cancer
By John Grimes

Can skin cancer be avoided? While scientists still have miles to go before they can determine whether or not skin cancers can be completely deterred, at least one type is associated with definite risk factors.

The three main types of skin cancer are: basal cell carcinoma; squamous cell carcinoma; and malignant melanoma. All three are detrimental to one's health, though two out of the three can be cured if caught early enough. This sort of skin cancer is responsible for 90 percent of all skin cancers within the United States. Basal cell carcinoma hardly ever seeps into other parts of the body, though it can reach the bone if it is not eradicated right away. Those at risk for this type of cancer are usually Caucasian, fair skinned, light eyed, and have light hair. It is also believed that this type of cancer occurs when parts of the body are exposed to a large amount of sunlight.

Squamous cell carcinoma affects 200,000 people every year. As with basal cell carcinoma, this type of skin cancer can be cured if it is detected early enough. Squamous cell carcinoma usually affects the ears, face, lips, and mouth, which is one of the main reasons why it is easily measurable. Though scientists do not know why this type of cancer occurs, it is usually found in Caucasians with light skin, light eyes and light hair. Sun damage is thought to be one of the major causes of this cancer, though this has yet to be proven concretely.

The last type of skin cancer happens to be the most dangerous kind. Melanoma is a rare type of cancer, yet it also happens to be the deadliest. Those that are at risk for melanoma include: persons with blond or red hair; persons with blue eyes and a fair complexion; those with a family history of melanoma; and those that spend a significant amount of time in the sun without proper sunblock. While melanoma usually strikes those with a fair complexion, it will also strike those that spend time in the sun -- whether or not they happen to have fair skin.

The only known way to prevent melanoma from occurring is to make sure to wear sunblock every day. Not only should you wear sunblock during those summer months, but it is also important to wear sunblock during the winter months as well. Rather than wait to see whether or not you become ill, do yourself a favor and put on that sunblock no matter what the weather report says - it could save your life.

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