I’m on the hunt! It’s the last day of #melanomaawarenessmonth BUT that doesn’t mean we should stop checking & protecting our skin. Here are a couple of my quick skinsafety tips for summer (and all year long)!
CHECK REGULARLY! I recommend once a month at home on the day of your birthday, then you won’t forget! Check ALL of your skin including your palms/soles and under your nails. Have your hair stylist or a friend help with your scalp, use a hand mirror for your back! Check in with your dermatologist once a year or at the recommended frequency.
. . .
REMEMBER THAT MELANOMA AFFECTS ALL SKIN TYPES. 🤲🏾Acral lentiginous melanoma🤲🏾 is a form of melanoma that can occur on the palms/soles/under the nails and tends to be more aggressive and advanced at diagnosis in the skin of color patient (this unfortunately is the skin cancer that took Bob Marley’s life). . . .
KNOW WHAT YOU ARE LOOKING FOR. My quick and dirty rule is look for anything NEW, rapidly CHANGING, or BLEEDING on its own. You should work with your board certified dermatologist to discuss specific features to watch out for. I educate with a modified ABCDE checklist created by June Robinson, MD (Northwestern): A-assess, B-border, C-color, D-diameter, E-evolution. This checklist is for your moles & intended to help identify melanoma BUT don’t forget about other growths and non-melanoma skin cancers!
. . .
PROTECT EVERYDAY. You’ll need a broad spectrum daily sunscreen of SPF 30 or higher that is water resistant. Check out my recent post “Sunscreens for Skin of Color” which includes updates on new sunscreen technology that is helpful for ALL skin types. Also remember to seek shade, re-apply your sunscreen every 2 hours, consider additional protection with broad brim hats and UPF clothing. And wear sunscreen daily even in the winter months!
Pictured: Me and my dermatoscope (#dermlitedl3n). This thing has pretty cool technology - polarized and non polarized light as well as a color corrector to help analyze moles up close! #themoreyouknow #nmbetter