Recognising the early warning signs of skin cancer can be the difference between a minor procedure and a major health concern. Early detection not only allows for more straightforward treatments but can also improve the chances of a positive outcome. In this blog, we’ll talk more about the importance of being vigilant so that you can prioritise your skin’s health and well-being. 

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Identifying Concerning Skin Changes

As our skin is constantly exposed to various elements, changes can occur over time, some of which might be concerning. Being proactive and informed about these changes is important. Here’s what to be vigilant about:

  • New Moles or Growths: Any new mole or growth that appears suddenly should be monitored. A medical professional can help you differentiate between a benign mole and a potentially harmful one.
  • Changes in Existing Moles: Alterations in size, colour or shape can signal a problem. Regularly comparing moles can aid in early detection.
  • Itchy or Bleeding Lesions: If a mole or lesion becomes itchy or starts to bleed, it’s time to take notice. Such symptoms can be early indicators of more severe skin conditions.
  • Painful or Tender Spots: Discomfort from a mole or lesion can hint at underlying issues.

If you observe any of these signs, it’s important to seek professional advice immediately. Early intervention can help keep your skin healthy.

How Do Skin Cancer Symptoms Differ Among Types

While all skin cancers require attention and timely intervention, understanding the differences in their symptoms can aid in early detection and treatment. Basal cell carcinomas might appear as a pearly bump, while squamous cell carcinomas can manifest as a red, scaly patch. Melanomas, a more severe form, often show up as changing moles but can also appear suddenly as a new dark spot. This is why it is important to get professional checkups done and you should also monitor your skin for any unusual changes.

Steps To Examine Your Skin For Suspicious Changes

Regular self-examinations can be a lifesaver, acting as the first line of defence in early detection. Here’s how to go about it:
  • Inspect your entire body: From your face to your feet, make sure to examine every inch. Pay special attention to often-missed spots like between the toes and the undersides of your arms.
  • Use a mirror: Using a mirror is important in checking hard-to-see areas like the back, neck and the backs of your legs. A handheld mirror, when used in conjunction with a wall-mounted one, can be particularly useful for viewing tricky spots so that you don’t miss any areas.
  • Document changes: It’s important to take photos of any suspicious spots or moles to monitor changes over time. Regular documentation not only provides a visual history but also aids in making it easier to spot evolving changes or new growths.
While self-examinations are important, a trained eye can often catch abnormalities that might be overlooked for timely and appropriate intervention.

Importance Of Professional Skin Checks For Early Detection

Regular skin checks by professionals play an important role in the early detection and treatment of skin cancers. While self-examinations can help in identifying noticeable changes, they are not a substitute for a comprehensive professional evaluation:

Comprehensive Examination

Professional skin checks involve a meticulous examination of every inch of your skin, from the scalp to the soles of your feet. Doctors are trained to identify even the subtlest signs of skin abnormalities that might be overlooked during self-examinations.

Advanced Diagnostic Tools

Doctors use advanced medical equipment and techniques during skin checks. This advanced technology can help in identifying potential concerns that might not be visible to the naked eye.

Diagnosis and Treatment

If any suspicious lesions or moles are identified, doctors can take immediate action, which may include diagnostic tests. Their knowledge helps ensure that different types of skin cancer are diagnosed and treated appropriately.

Prioritise Your Skin Health With Eli Waters Medical Centre

If you’re in Hervey Bay and have concerns about your skin or just want to stay ahead with regular check-ups, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at Eli Waters Medical Centre. Give us a call to book an appointment or to find out more about our range of medical services.