The sun is a heavenly luminous body that gives our planet life. Despite the advantages it offers, it also emits harmful rays known as ultraviolet (UV) radiation. If you are overexposed to ultraviolet rays, there is an increased risk that you could develop skin cancer. But how does this happen, exactly? In a nutshell, the DNA found in your skin cells could be damaged if your skin is given excessive exposure to UV radiation. If the damage continues to develop, cells can multiply rapidly, which could eventually result in skin cancer.
Fortunately, as with all types of cancer, early diagnosis can raise your chances of successful skin cancer treatment. Here at South County Dermatology, you can come to our Narragansett, Westerly, Barrington, or East Greenwich, RI, offices for both screenings and skin cancer treatment. Until then, here’s what you need to know about skin cancer warning signs and prevention.
Common Skin Cancer Signs You Should Look Out For
Here are some warning signs that you should note and look out for, according to the Skin Cancer Foundation:
- Moles or growths that suddenly appear on your skin.
- Growths or moles that have developed.
- Moles or growths that appear different than they were before.
- Lesions that itch, alter, bleed, or that don’t improve in time.
- An abnormal brown or pink mark, patch, or mole.
Top Ways to Prevent Skin Cancer
Did you know that even on a cloudy day, the risk of getting skin cancer is still possible? It’s vital to note that clouds are not enough to protect you from those harmful ultraviolet rays. With this in mind, the following are some simple ways you can follow to minimize your risk of getting skin cancer:
- Look for shade when needed. The sun’s rays are the most detrimental during the hours of 10 AM to 4 PM.
- Sport yourself with necessary covering. Merely wearing a hat, long-sleeves, long pants, and sunglasses can help shield you from the sun.
- Cover your skin with broad-spectrum (UVA/UVB) sunscreen that has an SPF of 15 or greater daily. If you are performing an outdoor activity for a prolonged period, make sure to apply sunscreen with an SPF of 30.
- Check and observe your skin monthly to check for any skin irregularities and new growths that could indicate skin cancer.
- Visit your dermatologist in our Narragansett, Westerly, Barrington, or East Greenwich, RI, for regular skin cancer screenings, at least once yearly, or if you spot any signs of skin cancer.
- Keep away from tanning beds and tanning in general.
For Skin Cancer Treatment or Screenings, We Can Help
Dial (401) 471-3376 to reach South County Dermatology and set your appointment in our Narragansett, Westerly, Barrington, or East Greenwich, RI.