The sun is out and everyone is eager to enjoy the warmer weather. But as the days grow longer and the air warmer be sure your skin is well protected. May is skin cancer awareness month so Dr. Wheeler wants remind all of his patients that sun damage is the leading cause of wrinkles and fine lines, and it causes skin cancer. It is important to protect your skin for your health and well-being. Extended sun exposure is a known health risk. The Annapolis, MD Sandel Center has some recommendations on how to stay sun-safe anytime you are out enjoying the sun.
Skin Cancer Awareness
Skin cancer is one of the most common types of cancer and if caught early, can be effectively treated. The most common regions patients develop skin cancer are highly exposed regions of the body such as the face, neck, arms, and hands. We often see an increase of skin cancer on the left side of the body on patients who do a lot of driving. Basal cell carcinoma is the most common cancer followed by squamous cell carcinoma and melanoma. Every type of skin cancer shows differently and some are more aggressive than others.
If you notice any abnormal marks on your body or changes in freckles or birthmarks, be sure to contact Dr. Wheeler. Dr. Wheeler may recommend you receive a biopsy if there is a concern for cancer. If the lesion needs to be removed, you can trust that Dr. Wheeler will remove and repair the area with the utmost care and expertise to ensure the least amount of scarring. Dr. Wheeler offers a range of skin cancer treatments and reconstructive surgery including Mohs surgery for cancer in sensitive areas.
This chart from the Skin Cancer Foundation can help you identify suspicious skin markings that should be checked by a medical professional.
Protect Your Skin
There are many ways to enjoy the sun while keeping your skin protected. Dr. Wheeler recommends wearing sunscreen on exposed skin every day of the year. Many moisturize contain sunscreen and can help keep your skin from becoming damaged. If you are going to be spending an extended amount of time in the sun during the warmer months be sure to use a higher SPF sunscreen for maximum protection. Wearing a large brimmed hat while outdoors can help keep the sun off of your sensitive facial skin that is most susceptible to sun damage.
If you notice any changes in your skin or believe you may have the signs of skin cancer, schedule a visit to the Sandel Center as soon as possible. Early diagnosis is your best chance at effective treatment. Contact our Annapolis office or schedule an appointment online.