Why you should get an annual skin screening

October 12, 2017

Skin cancer affects 1 out of 5 Americans, according to the American Academy of Dermatology.  We recommend that all of our patients get an annual skin screening with a dermatologist to help detect and prevent skin cancer.

“Early detection of melanoma can be the difference between easy removal versus major surgery, or worse. Early detection can be the difference between life and death,” says Dr. Brooke Bair, Midtown Integrative Health & Wellness’ dermatologist.

Getting your skin checked doesn’t take very long. The process is quick, painless and non-invasive, so there’s really no excuse not to get checked!  Those with fair skin or a lot of moles are definitely the strongest candidates for regular screenings. People with a history of skin cancer or a relative with skin cancer should definitely come in for 6- to 12-month screenings as well.

“To put it simply, annual screenings save lives,” says Dr. Bair. “And don’t forget to monitor your own moles, looking for changes in shape, diameter or color.”

Self-care is instrumental in prevention.  Bair says that the best defense is liberal use of sunscreen with  SPF30 or higher and wearing hats that shield the face from the sun.

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