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Freeholders Urge Residents to Be ‘Sun Smart’ this Summer – Free Skin Scans Offered

(Woodbury, NJ) – Gloucester County Freeholder Director Robert M. Damminger and Freeholder Adam J. Taliaferro are urging resident to be 'Sun Smart' this summer and to take precautions to prevent overexposure to the sun. 

The Gloucester County Department of Health, Senior & Disability Services will also be offering free Dermascan screenings at several locations throughout the summer.  Dermascan is a tool that allows you to see how the sun affects your skin.

Freeholder Director Damminger said, "Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer in the United States, and it is the most preventable type. You can protect yourself and your family from most skin cancers by taking some simple precautions to literally save your skin."

Freeholder Taliaferro said that making smart lifestyle choices like wearing sunscreen and avoiding tanning are essential in protecting your skin and potentially your life. 

“Over the past three decades, more people have had skin cancer than all other cancers combined.  Exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet radiation (UVR) is strongly linked to all forms of skin cancer. With good sun safety habits including proper clothing and sunscreen, families can enjoy all sorts of outdoor activities without risking their health. As parents, we must teach our children to incorporate sun protection into their daily routine, which will significantly lower their risk of developing skin cancer as an adult,” said Taliaferro who serves as the liaison to the Department of Health. 

Taliaferro said that Dermascan screenings will be held from 10 am to 12 noon on the following days:

June 25 and July 9:  Chestnut Branch Park, 401 Main Street, Mantua

July 10:  Gloucester County Dream Park, 400 US 130 South, Logan Twp.
July 11 and 25:Fasola Park, 1720 Delsea Drive, Deptford

The Gloucester County Department of Health would like to empower families to stay safe in the sun with the following tips from The Skin Cancer Foundation:

  • Seek the shade: Remind kids to play in shaded areas in order to limit UV exposure. Check with camps to see if there are adequate places for campers to seek shade during outdoor activities taking place between 10 AM and 4 PM, when UV rays are most intense.
  • Avoid tanning: Remember tanning itself is caused by DNA damage to the skin.
  • Cover up with clothing: Consider dressing children in swim shirts or rash guards while in the water at the pool or beach. Protect the face, neck and eyes with broad-brimmed hats and UV-blocking sunglasses. 
  • Use sunscreen: For everyday use, look for broad spectrum (UVA/UVB) sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30. If your child will be spending extended time outdoors, use a water-resistant, broad spectrum sunscreen. Apply 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) of sunscreen to your child’s entire body 30 minutes before going outside. Assist children in reapplying sunscreen every two hours and after swimming or playing sports, because water and sweat wash sunscreen away. If your children apply their own sunscreen, remind them to cover easy-to-miss spots, such as the backs of ears and neck, as well as the tops of feet and hands.
  • Keep newborns out of the sun: For infants, protective clothing and keeping them out of the sun are best, but it is still safe and necessary to apply sunscreen to exposed skin, even for infants over 6 months old.
  • Buy new sunscreen each year: Don’t dig to the bottom of your beach bag for last year’s sunscreen. Sun protection expires after 12 months.
  • Practice what you preach: Incorporate these tips into your own lifestyle. You’ll not only set a good example, but you’ll reduce your risk of skin cancer, sun damage and skin aging.
For more information about Gloucester County Department of Health’s Summer Sun Safety campaign residents can call 856-218-4106 or visit our website at www.gloucestercountynj.gov