Skin cancer is the most common cancer, and strikes all ages and ethnicities. One in five Americans will develop skin cancer over the course of their lifetime. So how can you detect changes that might be of concern? Schedule an appointment for an annual skin check with a Board Certified Dermatologist to have a full-body skin exam. Your doctor will go over your medical and family history and give you a head-to-toe skin examination. Make sure to call attention to any areas that you might be concerned about – moles that have shown any changes in color or size, or blemishes or lesions that re-occur or do not seem to heal. A biopsy can be done of any suspicious lesions to rule out malignancy.
An annual skin check by your dermatologist can bring peace of mind, but also make it a habit to check your skin yourself at least once a month. Skin cancers can occur anywhere, not just in areas often exposed to the sun, so be certain to check in place like between toes, skin folds and scalp. It’s easier and more fun if you do it with a friend! If you do regular checks you are more likely to notice changes as soon as they happen, so put a monthly reminder on your calendar so you don’t forget!
A free, downloadable Skin Check Kit is available online through the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery that goes over the specifics of how to perform a skin check and what to look for. Skin checks are important, but don’t forget to always wear sun protection like Christie’s Recapture Day + IR Defense Anti-Aging Treatment to help prevent problems before they start!