Skin self-exam means checking your own skin regularly for any abnormal growths or unusual changes. A skin self-exam helps find any suspicious skin problems early. The earlier skin cancer is diagnosed, the better chance you will have for a cure.
The National Cancer Institute (NCI) and the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) recommend that people perform a skin self-exam once a month.
The easiest time to do the exam may be after you take a bath or shower. Women may wish to perform their skin self-exam when they do their monthly breast self-exam . Men may want to do the skin self-exam when they perform their monthly testicular self-exam .
Ideally, the room should have a full-length mirror and bright lights so that you can see your entire body.
When you are performing the skin self-exam, look for:
Experts recommend that you examine your skin in the following way:
Always tell your doctor if: