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It's Time for Your Post-Summer Skin Cancer Check

Most adults understand that the sun can harm your skin, and most do a decent job of protecting themselves and their families by using sunscreen and limiting time in direct sunlight. Despite our best intentions, the sun has a sneaky way of getting to us anyway. 

Even short-term exposure can do more damage than you might think. Over time, that damage builds up and can lead to skin cancer, the most prevalent form of cancer, affecting a fifth of Americans every year. 

The good news is that it’s extremely treatable when you catch it early, so that’s one of our primary goals here at Chappell Rosso Dermatology and Laser & Aesthetic Center in Odessa, Texas. Our team of expert dermatologists know exactly how to spot the early signs of skin cancer that you can’t see yet, so we can begin treatment and clear it away before it becomes a serious problem.

What’s a post-summer skin check?

The end of summer is as good a time as any to schedule your annual skin cancer screening. Although that may sound like a major (even a bit scary) event, there’s nothing to worry about. This exam is noninvasive, completely painless, and the best way to detect skin cancer and precancer.

In fact, an annual skin cancer screening is not a diagnostic test; it’s simply a tool we use to let us know if there are any areas of concern that we need to keep an eye on or look into further with more tests just to be safe. 

What are the signs of skin cancer?

Getting a skin cancer screening is quick and simple. Our experienced team checks your skin from head to toe, looking for anything out of the ordinary, like moles, lesions, sunspots, textural oddities, and discolorations.

One of the main characteristics of cancerous tissue is that it changes over time, which is why it’s so important to come in once a year so that we can compare results and look for developments. Moles are particularly critical to watch, and an easy way to remember the types of changes that matter is by using the ABCDE rubric:

It’s normal to have moles, freckles, and age spots here and there on your skin, so don’t worry if you see several, especially as you get older. But if they multiply, grow, or morph in any way, it’s best to come in so we can take a look.

Does everyone need to have a skin cancer screening?

We recommend an annual skin cancer screening for everyone, but there are some people who absolutely shouldn’t ignore these yearly exams, because they are at high risk for skin cancer. This means you if you have:

If any of these characteristics describe you, it's imperative that you protect yourself diligently from the sun's harmful rays. That means using a high-quality, broad-spectrum sunscreen and wearing protective clothing and a hat when you must be out in the sun. It doesn’t take long for minor damage from small stints outdoors to accumulate and turn into something serious.

If we find that you have basal cell or squamous cell carcinoma, two common types of skin cancer, you couldn’t be in better hands. We specialize in Mohs surgery, an advanced procedure that allows us to remove cancerous cells under the surface of your skin without damaging surrounding tissues.

So, as you push your tank tops to the back of the closet and pull out your parka, add one more thing to your fall routine — call or click to schedule your annual skin cancer screening at Chappell Rosso Dermatology and Laser & Aesthetics Center.

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