June 9, 2011
Getting too much sun is bad for anyone, but it's especially dangerous for babies, whose sensitive skin hasn't developed enough layers of natural protection to withstand intense summer rays.
In fact, sun-related skin changes that occur as early as the first year of life may trigger a cascade of reactions that could lead to melanoma and other forms of skin cancer later in life.
A new review in the July issue of Pediatrics Sun says exposure earlier in life seems to be associated with different cell changes and an earlier diagnosis of melanoma than exposure in the adult years.
Skin cancer rates -- including rates of melanoma, the most lethal type -- appear to be rising.