What to Look for in Self Examinations

Visiting the dermatologist is extremely important. It is recommended to get a full skin exam every year to allow your dermatologist to assess your skin and take note of any new or changing growths. In between visits to your dermatologist, it’s important to perform skin checks of your own. Being aware of marks, moles, freckles and other growths on your body can help you notice any changes in size or color over time. While that brown circle may prove to be just a beauty mark, a discoloration could be a sign of a more serious condition, such as skin cancer. Here are some things to look for when performing at-home skin checks.

Marks that Change in Color and Size

You should remain on the lookout for any marks on your body that change in color and size. If you have beauty marks, for example, they have likely looked exactly the same for your entire life. If you notice that one of them has changed color or that one of them is growing, you could have a more serious problem. In fact, it may not be a beauty mark at all; it may be a sign of a condition that is occurring below the surface.

Wounds that Won’t Heal

When you are wounded, you should check to make sure that the wound is properly healing. Some cuts will continue to reopen, or you may have a sore on your back that has been present for months. These wounds can be a sign of a condition on your skin, or they may be a warning that your body is not healing in the way that it should be. Also, if you constantly have open wounds, infections can be coming in through them, so you need to have these issues addressed.

Discolored Patches of Skin

When you are doing your at-home skin check, not only should you be on the lookout for spots, marks and moles that have changed color, but you should also look for discolored patches of skin. If you have a random dark patch of skin that was not previously there, then you may have a particular condition or disease.

Other Things to Look for

You should make sure that you know your skin well because you should be on the lookout for any changes or new growths. If you see new moles, freckles or skin tags, they may be a sign of a problem. However, they can also prove totally benign.
During your at-home skin check, you are looking for anything on your skin that was not there before. You should pay particular attention to areas where you were sunburned, even if the sunburn occurred in the past. A harsh sunburn from years ago can come back to cause problems now or at some point in the future.

At Rao Dermatology, we offer medical and cosmetic services that are designed to keep your skin healthy. Our doctors can examine your skin and determine if any growths or discolorations are cause for concern. We can then offer treatment solutions that are tailored to your needs. Contact Rao Dermatology today to schedule your consultation.

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