Beach vacations and time at the pool…it will soon be summer…and your skin will be exposed to the damaging, ultraviolet rays of Nevada’s relentless summer sun. It’s a fact: premature aging, wrinkles, spots and skin cancer can all trace their beginnings to the sun.
Skin cancer. Scary words that none of us want to hear. But many skin cancers can be easily and successfully treated if caught early. That’s why it is important to have your skin – all of it – checked at least once a year for changes or abnormalities, to have pre-cancerous lesions treated and to examine any otherwise suspicious growths. This is especially critical as you age. Arming yourself with information is critical. Read on.
The three types of skin cancer are:
- Basal cell, which is a slow growing cancer, and unlikely to spread to distant areas of the body or cause death. It appears as a painless, sometimes shiny raised area of the skin.
- Squamous cell is more likely to spread. It appears as a hard lump with a scaly top.
- Melanoma is the most aggressive. Moles that have changed in size, color or shape or are itchy or bleed are some of the signs of melanoma.
Keep in mind:
- Skin cancer is serious, but most skin cancers, if found early, are treatable.
- People with many moles have a higher risk of melanoma.
- Other risk factors include advanced age, heredity, light skin color and exposure to tanning beds.
- Over one million people in the U.S. each year are diagnosed with skin cancer. Unfortunately, many more go undiagnosed.
- UVA and UVB sunscreen helps block the rays than lead to skin cancer but it does not prevent it…sun damage is cumulative. To be effective, sunscreen must be worn.
Dr. Shah wants to help you take care of your amazing skin…every season of the year.