May is Skin Cancer Detection and Prevention Month


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Did you know that skin cancer is the most commonly diagnosed type of cancer in the United States?  

Not only is skin cancer the most commonly diagnosed type of cancer in the U.S., it is also the most preventable type of cancer and if caught early it is very treatable.

What are the risk factors for developing skin cancer?

Take the Fitzpatrick Skin Type quiz here to learn more about your personal risk and discuss any questions or concerns with your healthcare provider.  The Fitzpatrick Skin Type quiz takes into account the following factors:

  • eye color
  • natural hair color
  • natural skin color
  • status of freckles
  • questions relating to how your skin reacts to sun exposure

Each of your answers is assigned a point value and your total score places you in a specific risk category.

How can you spot skin cancer on your own?

Take the “Spot Skin Cancer Quiz” available on the American Academy of Dermatology website here. This information could help save your own life or someone else’s by sharing this information with family and friends.  It is a short quiz that will only take a couple minutes … it is definitely worth your time!

What are some of the most effective ways to prevent harmful sun exposure?

According to The Skin Cancer Foundation there are many ways you can prevent skin cancer some of which are shared here and include:

  • Use sunscreen everyday with an SPF 15 or higher (preferably waterproof, broad-spectrum). Apply 30 minutes before going outside.  
  • Wear a hat
  • Seek shade between the hours of 10 a.m. and 4:00 p.m.
  • Avoid sunburns
  • Avoid tanning beds
  • Educate yourself on what precancerous lesions and actual skin cancers look like. Follow up with your physician on anything that looks suspicious by reviewing the information here.

What resources are available for learning more about skin cancer?

The following websites provide a wealth of information and helpful resources.  Take time to review and “share” this information with family and friends. Educating ourselves and those around us raises awareness and makes a lasting impact.  

Be Smart and Protect the Largest Organ of your Body!

Photo by Archie Binamira on Pexels