Post Tagged with: "Skin health"

The Skin Cancer Alphabet: The ABCs for Prevention

Doctor checking on her skinBecause skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the US, you need to learn how to identify its early warning signs. With skin cancer, as with every other illness, early detection and proper treatment are crucial to recovery. But did you know that you play a key role in early skin cancer detection? When you’re familiar with all your skin marks (blemishes, freckles, and moles), you’ll most likely spot changes should they occur.

The rule of thumb is if you spot recent changes in size or color to one of your moles or markings, it’s best that you consult your doctor as soon as possible, advises a prominent dermatologist in Salem. This is especially important if these changes come with crusting, itching, or bleeding and you have a history of cancer in your family.

To that end, you need to be aware of the ABCs skin cancer symptoms that could aid you in identifying potential issues before it’s too late.

A is for Asymmetry

In general, lesions associated with melanoma — the most fatal form of skin cancer — don’t have symmetrical shapes. Most benign (harmless or non-cancerous) moles have symmetrical shapes.

B is for Border

Non-cancerous moles typically have even, smooth borders. Malignant or cancerous moles have undefined, oddly shaped borders.

C is for Color

The color of benign moles is usually tan or brown. On the other hand, moles with multiple hues such as tan, brown, black, and blue or those that have unevenly distributed colors could indicate melanoma.

D is for Diameter

The size of malignant moles is usually about 6mm in diameter, which is roughly the size of a typical pencil eraser.

E is for Evolution

If you notice a mole changing in appearance, it could indicate skin cancer.

It’s crucial to keep in mind that everyone, regardless of skin tone, could get skin cancer. With this in mind, make sure to inspect your moles at least once a month, see your dermatologist or doctor for a thorough inspection of your moles at least once a year, and don’t forget to apply sunscreen diligently.

November 15, 2017 at 1:00 amHead of Health