Stopping skin cancer means spotting it in time. Skin cancer is the cancer you can see. Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer but is also the most treatable if detected early. The three main types of skin cancer are basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and melanoma. Dermatologists recommend following the ABCDE guideline for skin cancer awareness, early detection, and prevention tips. With a visual assessment of the skin, the ABCDE rule is a helpful acronym that can identify potential skin cancer. The letters stand for asymmetrical, border, color, diameter, and evolving. A new or changing spot on the skin may be a sign of skin cancer. By checking for any of the ABCDE characteristics, you are taking the first step to skin cancer awareness.

Taking proactive steps to preventing skin cancer include staying out of the sun or stay in the shade as much as possible during peak hours of 10am to 4pm, covering the skin with UV protective clothing, wearing sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat, avoiding indoor tanning machines, and applying a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher and reapply every two hours. Knowing your risk factors is another key prevention tip. Although anyone can get skin cancer, the risk is elevated for those who are fair skinned with freckles, have natural blonde or red hair, and blue or green eyes. A person may have an increased risk for melanoma, one of the most dangerous types of skin cancer, if they have unusual moles, specifically moles that change in color, grown unevenly, or change in texture, more than 50 moles on the body, a family history of melanoma or unusual moles, fair skin the sunburns easily, and a history of blistering sunburns. If you meet any of the criteria for increased risk factors, THE CENTER for Advanced Dermatology advises you to get a full-body, annual skin assessment. One in five Americans will develop some form of skin cancer. Before it affects your health, schedule your exam by calling 602-867-7546 or book online at WEBSITE.

Most skin cancer is curable if detected and treated in the early stage. Safeguard your health by evaluating your body with a personal skin exam once a month and meeting with your dermatologist once a year or more often should you notice changes to your skin.