Summer Skincare: protect your skin by visiting a dermatologist in Calgary

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As fall creeps closer, the opportunities to explore outside and soak up some sun are coming to an end. 

But when you were hanging out and enjoying some rays this summer, was your skin protected?

It is estimated that only 30-40% of Canadian adults use sunscreen or seek shade when exposed to the ultraviolet radiation (UVR) from the sun. More worrisome is the fact that skin cancers have the highest incidence of all cancers here in Canada, and the primary risk factor for all skin cancers is exposure to UVR.

Although these stats sound scary, there are some simple things you can do to protect your skin during (and after) some fun in the sun.

Summer sun checklist: prevention is a great first step.

Protecting your skin during the warm summer months doesn’t have to be complicated. In fact, the catchy slogan “Slip! Slop! Slap!” is an easy way to remember sun safety tips when enjoying the warm weather:

  • Slip on a shirt
  • Slop on sunscreen
  • Slap on a hat

These recommendations were made by a wildly successful skin cancer awareness campaign from the 1980’s, and the catchy and simple message still rings true today!

Although taking precautions in the sun is a great first step to keeping yourself safe, even the most vigilant summer sun worshippers can still develop skin cancer. The best way to ensure your skin’s health is to visit your healthcare provider for an assessment. Our Calgary dermatologists are also available every year for an end of summer skin check up through referrals from your healthcare providers.

Get an end summer skin check up, a dermatologist can help

During an exam, a dermatologist at our Revolution Medical Clinic Meadows Mile will check out the entire surface of your skin with a focus on areas that are most frequently exposed to the sun. Although most non-melanoma skin cancers (approximately 85%) develop on these areas, some do not. 

During this appointment, your dermatologist will be keeping an eye out for a few key warning signs. The ABCDE rule is one that many skincare professionals follow when assessing a patient. Your dermatologist will notice is moles are:

  • Asymmetrical
  • Borders are uneven or irregular
  • Colour is not uniform 
  • Diameter is larger than 6 mm across
  • Evolving or changing in colour/shape/size or feeling

You might be thinking, “these are things I can check for myself!” and in some cases, that’s true! Practicing self-checks is a good habit to get into, but remember that some skin irregularities are hard to see, and mutations can be subtle. Seeking the help of a qualified skin expert is the best way to ensure you are catching these changes in a timely manner. 

Need an end of summer skin check up in Calgary? Our family doctors and dermatologists are here for you!

Getting regular skin exams, especially following the summer months, can help detect skin cancer early. Our doctors at our Meadows Mile medical clinic location in SE Calgary are here to help you maintain your skins’ health, and can answer any skin-related questions you might have.

Don’t wait until next year to worry about sun exposure, book your end of summer skin check up today!

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