Know How to Self-Check for Skin Cancer?

We posted this back in 2013, but it’s still so relevant! Skin cancer is something anyone could get. It’s important to take as many protections as possible such as wearing the proper amount of sunscreen, put on sun protective clothes, maybe even wear a hat or carry an umbrella. They may seem like annoying things to do, but they could save you!

While we’re talking about keeping your skin soft and beautiful, it’s also very important, especially in this intense Florida sun, to keep it healthy, as well.  A great way to start is by doing a quick self-check for skin cancer, and it’s easier than you think it is!

PRinc_photo_of_skin_cancer_screening1: Find a Bright Room

The easiest way to see what’s going on is if you’re in a place that’s brightly lit.

2: Check Your “ABCDEs”

Start by checking the front, then back of your body in a mirror before moving on to each side, arms raised above you.  Look for A, Asymmetry (mole halves don’t match), B, uneven Borders around moles, C, non-uniform Colors in the skin and moles, D, moles larger than the Diameter of a pencil eraser, and E, mole growth that’s constantly changing and Evolving with inflammation and itching.

3: Check Everywhere

Start looking at places you wouldn’t normally think of, like on the inside of your elbows, your inside forearms, your palms, the bottoms of your feet, and so on.  Leave no stone unturned!  If you have darker skin, pay particular attention to your palms, the bottoms of your feet and your nail beds, since those are the hotspots for acral lentiginous melanoma (ALM), which women of color get more than any other group.

4: Check Fingers and Toes

Now check the backs of your legs and feet, the spaces between your toes, and your finger and toenails.  Look for a vertical line in any shade of brown extending from the cuticle to the tip of your fingernail, or a new and unusually colored band on the nail.

5: Don’t Forget Your Backside!

Use a hand mirror (or a friend!) to check the back of your neck, your back, your bottom (maybe not the friend for that one!), and your scalp.  Consider using a hairdryer to get a better view if you have thick hair.

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