It’s estimated that 1 in 5 Americans will develop some sort of skin cancer by the time they’re 70. While some cases may be fairly benign, others can be deadly. For that reason, it’s extremely important to perform cancer screenings and to take preventative measures. By understanding how to detect the early signs of skin cancer, it’s much easier to avoid skin cancer treatments in San Diego, CA. From searching for someone who specializes in skin cancer MOHS to wearing sunscreen, here’s what you need to know about early detection.
Once or twice a year, take some time to look over your body for any abnormal spots. For hard to reach areas, have a spouse or someone close to you look. If you notice anything peculiar, note it down. Keep an eye on the area for any changes. If changes do occur, it’s important to see a physician immediately.
Where to Look
Skin cancer typically develops in areas that are most exposed to the sun. For example, the face, lips, scalp, ears, and chest are all common areas for skin cancer to grow. It can affect people of all skin tones, including those with dark complexions. Performing regular self-checks is the best way to catch skin cancer early.
What Does Skin Cancer Look Like?
There are different types of skin cancer, and each one may exhibit different signs. For example, basal cell carcinoma may appear as a pearly or waxy bump. It may even look like a flat, or brown scar-like mark. In some cases, the bump may scab, heal, and then return. Cancerous squamous cells, on the other hand, appear as flat, red nodules or lesions with crusted surfaces. Melanoma typically manifests itself as large, brownish spots with darker speckles inside of it. Sometimes it’s itchy or may burn. Melanoma spots are often irregular in size and color. As a rule of thumb, if a spot or area on your body looks different than other moles or spots, it’s a good idea to have it checked.
Enlisting the Help of Physicians
While you may perform regular checks, it’s also a good idea to have skin checks performed periodically by your dermatologist or doctor. This is an especially good idea if your family has a history of skin cancer, or if you have a lot of moles. In the event that you’ve found an irregular mark or spot during one of your self-checks, schedule an appointment with your physician to have it looked at. They may recommend a biopsy to ensure that it’s not cancerous. The earlier that you catch these irregularities and have them checked, the easier it is to treat them.
Whether you have questions about skin cancer or you’re concerned about a spot on your body, don’t hesitate to reach out to a professional. Skin cancer prevention in San Diego is extremely important. With the right information and regular exams, you can decrease your risk of contracting skin cancer. Learn more about the risks associated with skin cancer or schedule an appointment with the experts at Academic & Aesthetic Dermatology Consultants today by visiting www.dermmd.com and don’t forget to wear sunscreen!