Growing up in Florida, Sevin Hagan, 16, spent most weekends at the beach. Then one day her doctor tested a wart-like bump on her arm, leading to a shocking diagnosis: She had melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer.
Sevin was lucky. Doctors removed her cancer early enough that she’s now in remission, but many aren’t as fortunate. Melanoma kills one person every hour of every day in the U.S., and every year, more than 5 million people are diagnosed with basal cell carcinoma or squamous cell carcinoma, the other types of skin cancer.
The good news? While there are risk factors that are out of your control (like your genetics and family history), you do have power over how much sun you get. “The exposure you build up as a teen doesn’t go away,” says surgical oncologist Dr. Vernon K. Sondak. So use this guide to stay safe in the sun this summer—and beyond.