How To Protect Yourself From Skin Cancer

Posted on: 9 March 2022

Skin cancer is the most ubiquitous form of cancer in the United States, and luckily, it is also the most preventable. In this article, we'll cover some ways that you can protect your skin from the sun and boost your protection against developing skin cancer.

Check Your Skin for Changes

Changes in your skin can be a sign of skin cancer. That's why it's essential to check your skin for changes at least once a month. One way to check for changes is to look for moles that have changed size, shape, or color. Examine your skin in front of a full-length mirror in a well-lit environment. Examine difficult-to-see regions like your back with a hand-held mirror.

Tell your dermatologist if you notice any of the following:

  • moles on your body that don't appear to be normal.
  • unhealed wounds
  • redness or swelling around the mole
  • color spreading from a spot's edge into the skin around it
  • Itching, soreness, or tenderness in a specific region that persists or returns
  • Oozing, scaliness, bleeding, 
  • the appearance of a lump on the surface of a mole

Protect Yourself From The Sun

On blisteringly hot days, an abundance of caution is key. When lounging on the sand with family and friends, make sure to stay under a beach umbrella and cover your skin to get the most protection from the sun. Slather sunscreen of at least SPF 50 on any unprotected areas to maximize benefits.

Avoid Tanning Beds

There is a common myth that tanning beds are healthier than laying out in the sun. They are commonly found at health spas and gyms. However, sunlamps and tanning beds may release more ultraviolet radiation than the sun, including UVA and UVB radiation. The problem is any UV radiation you get exposed to raises your cancer risk, and the more you absorb, the greater your risk of developing skin cancer.

Check Your Family History

Does melanoma run in your family? If so, you are at an increased risk of developing cancer yourself. Melanoma is a common type of skin cancer that arises from the melanocytes, the cells that produce melanin. Melanoma is the most dangerous type.

Get Screened by a Dermatologist

We recommend seeing a dermatologist once a year, or more frequently if you are at a greater risk of skin cancer, for a full-body, expert skin assessment as part of a comprehensive early detection plan.

Follow the steps in this post to reduce your risk of skin cancer. If you are concerned about your risk, please speak to your doctor.

For moer information on a skin cancer examination, contact a professional near you.


Dermatology for All Stages of Life

As you age, the skin conditions you deal with change. In your teens, you struggle with acne and oily skin. You get a little older, and perhaps your skin dries out and starts flaking. Then, in your 30s or 40s, you experience the return of hormonal acne — followed by the dryness and wrinkles that appear in your 50s. For every stage of life and the skin problems it brings, dermatologists are there. They employ the latest science to diagnose and treat your trouble skin. If you would like to learn more about common dermatologic treatments and how to improve your skin health, keep exploring this website, where we've collected a wide range of articles about all things skin-related.



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