Can you spot the kids in this picture that need sunscreen?
All of them.
No one is immune to skin cancer.
May is international skin cancer awareness month. We want to be sure you know that people of all races can get skin cancer.
Unfortunately, many people of color and even physicians don’t consider non-Caucasians to be at risk for skin cancers until it’s too late. The 5-year survival rate for African Americans with melanoma is 77 percent, compared to 91 percent for Caucasians. This disparity seems primarily the result of later detection. Asian Americans and non-Hispanic Blacks tend to have more advanced diseases before they seek treatment.
Regardless of race, take these precautions:
- Protect the skin you’re in. Avoid the sun during peak times (10am-4pm) when possible, wear protective clothing, and use broad-spectrum sunscreen prior to exposure.
- Know the skin you’re in. Perform a head-to-toe skin exam monthly to check for changes in the appearance of moles or new growths.
- Show the skin you’re in. If you are worried, you can use the First Derm app to get personalized information in about 24 hours based on the picture and descriptions you send through the app. There’s no need to take time off work to see a generalist, and then wait 30 days or so to see a dermatologist. Get the results you need, when you need them. Early detection saves lives.