Doing A Self Exam For Skin Cancer Is Important

// Published November 12, 2015 by NixVue

Practicing sun safety throughout the summer is very important for your skin, but is also important to continue your vigilance during the fall, winter and spring. During the year you should be performing a self examine of your bodies skin from head to toe each month. You will be looking for any suspicious lesions that may pop up. A monthly self exam can help you spot potential skin cancers in their early stages and usually are completely treatable before it has the potential for getting worse.

Dermatologist Dr. Ken Landow says that when performing a self exam it is very important to know what you are looking for. The first basic rule is to be able to spot either non melanoma or melanomas skin cancers such as squamous cell carcinoma and basal cell carcinoma. You will be looking for any new growths or moles that have significantly changed in color or texture. A lesion that itches, bleeds or changes is another sign it could be cancerous.

It is critical to catch the melanoma in its early stages so it can be treated immediately. Melanoma is one of the deadliest skin cancers and should not be ignored. Brown spots, growths or moles are usually nothing to worry about, but this is not always the case. If you have more than 100 moles on your body, you are at a higher risk for melanoma. The first signal can appear in one or more atypical moles. This is why it is very important to know your skin and be able to identify changes in the moles on your skin. If you have any doubt about the appearance of a mole it is best to visit your physician for a professional opinion.