Your skin is the largest and, certainly, the most obvious organ that makes up your body, which means it needs plenty of care. This care should be carried out periodically by a medical professional, but you can also do it on your own. You can do it through a self-examination regimen.
Checking Your Skin
Skin cancer is the most common of the malignant diseases, affecting millions of Americans every year. Its development is usually related to exposure to sunlight or some artificial source of ultraviolet rays, such as tanning beds. The early detection of skin cancer may come down to a simple examination that you can accomplish on your own. In a self-examination, you will want to look for lesions or moles that appear or change in terms of size or color. A lesion that itches, bleeds when scratched or fails to heal could be an indication of something serious.
How to Conduct a Self-Examination
Your primary concern will be of the areas that receive the most exposure to the sun, but you will need to check the rest of your body as well. This will require two mirrors, one a hand-type and the other full-length, and the examination should also be carried out in an area where there is sufficient light. You need to closely examine your face, including your lips, nose and both sides of your ears. You also have to inspect your scalp, which will probably require the use of a comb or even a blow dryer. Check both sides of your arms and under your fingernails. Continuing downward and, with the help of one or both mirrors, check your torso, your back, both sides of your legs and even your buttocks. Sitting down, you should be able to directly inspect your ankles, the tops and bottoms of both feet and your toenails.
How Self-Examinations are the Key to Good Health
Even though your skin receives more sun exposure during the summer, you need to examine yourself at least once every month of the year. If detected and treated in their early stages, most skin cancers are curable. A self-examination can be important to maintaining good health, but you will also need regular medical attention to guarantee that you stay healthy. Contact our office and let us help you take care of your skin.