May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month. Skin cancer is a common but preventable disease, and which affects one out of five people at least once during their life, according to the American Academy of Dermatology. While certain risk factors can make a patient more likely to develop certain types of skin cancers, anyone who goes outside and is exposed to the sun is susceptible. Fortunately, skin cancer can be prevented or effectively treated when detected early. The following are some of the key steps every patient should take to protect themselves against skin cancer.
Steps To Prevent Skin Cancer
- Wear sunscreen daily. The daily application of sunscreen is essential in the fight against skin cancer. Patients should apply a generous amount of broad spectrum sunscreen of 30 SPF or higher regardless of season or weather conditions. Sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat also provide much-needed protection during sunny weather.
- Avoid sun during peak hours. If possible, it is best to avoid prolonged exposure to the sun during peak hours of the day. That typically means between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. If you have have to be out and about during those hours, be sure to wear plenty of sunscreen and protective clothing. And, remember to re-apply sunscreen often.
- Consider a chemical peel. A chemical peel can buff away some of the existing sun damage of the skin. In addition, a stronger chemical peel will remove pre-cancerous growths and lesions from the skin, before they develop into cancer.
- Get regular skin screenings. When it comes to skin cancer, early detection is key. While it is important to check yourself periodically for any warning signs, nothing is as effective as a full body screen performed by a dermatologist. An annual screening is recommended for all patients.
For More Information About Skin Cancer Prevention, Contact Dr. Balle Today
To learn more about preventing and treating skin cancer, contact us today to schedule an appointment. Our offices are located in Grosse Pointe, and we can be reached at 313-886-2600. We look forward to hearing from you.