You probably don’t think about skin cancer very often in the middle of winter, but it’s as good a time as any to do a thorough inspection of your skin!
The main goal of doing a skin check is to get to know your moles and beauty marks. That way, if a suspect lesion appears, you’ll be able to detect it promptly. You can use a mirror to help you, or ask your partner to check out-of-sight areas such as your back, buttocks, and the back of your arms and thighs.
Checking your moles is as easy as ABCDE!
A for asymmetry: a healthy mole has a symmetrical shape.
B for border: normal beauty marks have smooth, regular borders and do not have raised edges.
C for colour: normal beauty marks are an even brown colour.
D for diameter: beauty marks are usually small; watch for moles that are wider than 6 mm.
E for evolution: if a mole undergoes a rapid change in size, colour or thickness, you should get it checked by a doctor.
You probably have beauty marks of various sizes, but they should normally all have a similar shape, colour and thickness. If you notice a mole that looks quite different from the others on your skin, you should show it to your doctor.
For more information on doing a skin check and risk factors for skin cancer, visit http://www.myskincheck.ca/en.