Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Melanoma/Skin Cancer Health Center

Select An Article
Font Size


Most nonmelanomaskin cancer can be prevented by protecting your skin from the sun and ultraviolet (UV)radiation.

  • Limit your exposure to the sun, especially from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., the hours of peak ultraviolet exposure.
  • Wear protective clothing, including a wide-brimmed hat, a long-sleeved shirt, and pants.
  • Wear sunglasses that block UV rays.
  • Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen that has a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 30. A broad-spectrum sunscreen protects the skin from both UVA and UVB rays.
  • Use lip balm or cream that has sun protection factor (SPF) to protect your lips from getting sunburned or developing cold sores.
  • Avoid tanning booths and sunlamps, which emit UV radiation and can cause skin damage.

Skin protection for children

Children and babies should be protected from the sun. You should start protecting your child from the sun when he or she is a baby. Because children and teens spend a lot of time outdoors playing, they get most of their lifetime sun exposure in their first 18 years.

  • Teach your children that it is important to protect their skin from the sun.
  • Have your children wear protective clothing, sunglasses, and a hat when they are in the sun.
  • Have your children wear sunscreen. Choose a sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher. Follow the instructions on the sunscreen. Reapply sunscreen after 2 hours in the sun or water, even if the sunscreen is waterproof.
  • Keep babies younger than 6 months out of direct sunlight.

Some people believe that a tan may protect them against a sunburn and skin damage. But the amount of sun exposure needed to get a tan can by itself cause skin damage.

actionset.gifSkin Cancer: Protecting Your Skin

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: November 14, 2014
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
Next Article:

Today on WebMD

Malignant melanoma
About 40-50 percent of those who live to be 65 may get it. Here’s how to spot early.
Woman checking out tan lines
There’s a dark side to that strive for beauty. See them here.
sauteed cherry tomatoes
Fight cancer one plate at a time.
Lung cancer xray
See it in pictures, plus read the facts.
12 Ways to Protect Your Skin from Melanoma
precancerous lesions slideshow
Do You Know Your Melanoma ABCs
15 Cancer Symptoms Men Ignore
screening tests for men
Vitamin D
Is That Mole Skin Cancer
Brilliant sun rays