The Friday before Memorial Day is Declared "Don't Fry Day" to Encourage Sun Safety and Awareness

WASHINGTON, May 19, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Skin cancer is a largely preventable disease, but it can be deadly. Skin cancer continues to be the most common type of cancer in the nation, with more than 3.5 million cases diagnosed in more than two million Americans each year. That's more than breast, colon, lung and prostate cancers combined.

Due to the rising rates of skin cancer from exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays, the National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention – along with the Prevent Cancer Foundation and partnering organizations – designated the Friday before Memorial Day (May 22, 2015) as "Don't Fry Day" to educate the public. The "Don't Fry Day" campaign aims to reduce the incidence of skin cancer by promoting sun safety and encouraging people to protect their skin while enjoying the outdoors.

This past year, the U.S. Surgeon General's office issued a Call to Action to Prevent Skin Cancer due to the increasing rates of skin cancer in this country. In the Call to Action, then Acting Surgeon General Boris D. Lushniak, M.D., M.P.H., stated, "The rates of skin cancer in our nation are increasing, creating a serious public health concern we cannot ignore."

"Healthy tans" are putting millions of lives at risk. Whether in direct sun or exposure to harmful UV radiation from tanning beds or sun lamps, individuals are damaging their skin and increasing their risk of skin cancer.

While the skin needs sunlight to help manufacture vitamin D, important for normal bone formation, overexposure to UV light can be detrimental by damaging and killing skin cells. The National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention recommends obtaining vitamin D through food and supplements.

The National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention urges the public to understand the risks of UV exposure, and encourages them to protect themselves from the sun and reduce their risk of cancer.

Protecting yourself from the sun:

  • Do Not Burn or Tan
    • Avoid intentional tanning.
  • Seek Shade.
    • When sun's rays are the strongest between the hours of 10AM and 4PM.
  • Wear Protective Clothing.
    • Long-sleeved shirts and pants.
    • A wide-brimmed hat, and UV-blocking sunglasses.
  • Generously Apply Sunscreen
    • Use a Broad Spectrum sunscreen with a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of 30 or higher for protection from ultraviolet A (UVA) and ultraviolet B (UVB) rays, which contribute to premature aging, sunburn and skin cancer.
    • Apply 15 minutes before going outdoors and reapply every two hours.
  • Use Extra Caution Near Water and Sand
    • These surfaces reflect the damaging rays of the sun, which can increase your chance of sunburn.

For more information on how to protect yourself from skin cancer, visit the National Council's site at The Prevent Cancer Foundation is a member of the National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention, the united voice of more than 45 organizations, associations and agencies dedicated to preventing skin cancer through education, advocacy and awareness. National Council members represent the nation's premiere physicians, researchers, clinicians and advocates for skin cancer prevention.

CONTACT: FOR MORE INFORMATION, CONTACT: Lisa Berry Prevent Cancer Foundation Phone: (703) 519-2107 Email:

Source:Prevent Cancer Foundation