Skin cancer refers to the rampant growth of abnormal cells in the skin. It is probably the most common and most recognisable of all cancers and affects more people worldwide than all other types of cancer combined. According to the latest survey, the beach-loving people of Australia are 13 times more likely to develop melanoma (a type of skin cancer) than the global average. Fortunately, skin cancer is also one of the most preventable cancers in the world. This stresses the importance of skin cancer prevention and screening.
Skin Cancer Screening | Skin Cancer Prevention and Screening
The only way to protect yourself from skin cancer or any other type of cancer for that matter is to reduce the chances of it developing in the first place. The best way to prevent and treat skin cancer is to detect it at an early stage. For this, it is important that you have regular screening exams to ensure early detection and successful treatment. In addition to screening, you also need to familiarise yourself with your skin, so that you are able to immediately notice any changes and report them to your doctor in a timely manner.
If you fall within one or more of the following risk groups, you should get a full-body skin cancer screening exam every year.
- Inherited Risk
- family history of skin cancer
- more than 50 moles on the body
- sensitivity to sun exposure
- freckles albinism and red hair
- Environmental Risk
- frequent sun exposure
- frequent trips to the tanning salon
- Prior Treatment Risk
- prior radiation treatment
- chemotherapy treatment
- other cancer treatment
Skin Cancer Prevention
There are plenty of things you can do to prevent the development of this deadly disease. Here are some of the most important preventive measures you need to take to minimise the chances of skin cancer:
- use a broad spectrum sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher
- always try to wear long-sleeved clothes
- avoid using tanning beds
- avoid too much sun exposure
- avoid going out in the sun when the sun rays are the strongest (10 am – 4 pm)
- try to use sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat whenever you go outside during the day
- perform a thorough check of your skin every month
- get a full-body skin cancer screening exam every year
With proper skin cancer prevention and screening, you can protect yourself from many different types of skin cancer.
If you would like further details or advice feel free to give us a call to book a consultation
Southgate Medical Centre
03 9690 1433