Skin Checks for Mayfield Heights Patients
Your skin is the largest or most extensive of your body’s organs. It fulfills several key functions to help maintain overall good health; helping regulate body temperatures, protecting internal organs and fending off microbes and the elements alike, among other benefits.
People of any age in Mayfield Heights, Ohio can maintain and protect this important bodily organ by taking some simple steps, including annual skin checks.
While the aging process and subsequent wrinkles, age spots and leathery patches are inevitable, certain skin changes can signal a more serious problem. Skin cancer for example, is the most common form of cancer for both men and women. Individuals can and should monitor their own skin to look for changes.
At an annual skin check however, a dermatologist, a trained professional who conducts hundreds of skin checks each year, will know exactly what to look for when examining a patient’s skin. In addition, a professional skin exam often finds melanomas that are thinner, or at an earlier stage of development than patients normally find on their own. The earlier the treatment for a melanoma, the more successful and less invasive the procedure to cure it.
People should start scheduling annual skin checks while in their mid-20s to early 30s, unless there are risk factors that could increase the possibility of a skin condition requiring medical treatment. As people near the age of 50, risks increase, and an annual skin check should be part of a healthy routine. Risk factors can include:
- Light colored hair and/or eyes
- Regular sun exposure
- History of sunburn
- Tanning bed use
- Family history of cancer
- History of unusual moles
The Skin Check Process
Skin checks take approximately 15 minutes when there aren’t any detectable issues. On the first visit to our Mayfield Heights office, a baseline skin check can serve as a benchmark to help the dermatologist more easily identify potential problems in the future. Be aware that skin checks do require the dermatologist to examine the entire body, from the top of your scalp to the bottom of your feet. Our staff does everything possible to maximize your comfort level during the exam.
The types of features the dermatologist examines or records during skin checks would include abnormal moles, freckles or skin patches, checking shape, pigmentation, size and more.
When conducting a self examination at home, simply follow the ABCs of skin appearance and if any of the following are present, schedule an appointment right away. Skin irregularities can be indicators of a few types of conditions besides cancer, including infections, eczema, psoriasis and other diseases. Watch for:
- Asymmetry — When one half of a mole or skin irregularity does not match the other half causing an asymmetrical shape
- Border irregularity — When the edges of the mole are ragged or uneven
- Color — When a mole changes color or contains multiple colors within it
- Diameter — Any mole larger than 6 mm in size
- Evolution — Any time a mole changes either shape, color or size
Skin checks provide the best preventive measure to guard against cancer or detect infections. Early detection means the vast majority of all cases are curable if properly and promptly diagnosed and treated.
During and after skin checks, the dermatologist will discuss the practice of healthy skin habits, and based on the results of this skin exam, recommend next steps.
Schedule a visit with one of our board-certified dermatologists for an annual skin check. We can often supply same day appointments, depending on your desired location, including our Mayfield Heights office. We will provide you with a professional diagnosis and skin treatment plan of action using the latest procedures and proven methods. Request an appointment online or give us a call at 1-866-377-6631.