Local Dermatologist recommends monthly self-exams for Melanoma

13News Now Ali Weatherton has the story

NORFOLK, Va. (WVEC) -- Did you know Melanoma occurs in Hampton Roads more frequently than in other parts of the country? That's according to Eastern Virginia Medical School. A local dermatologist recommends applying sunscreen every day even in the winter.

Doctor Abby Van Voorhees said when people use sunscreen they usually don't use enough. One ounce or the size of a shot glass is the amount of sunscreen that should be applied to an area the size of your face.

"Put it on in the morning, so it is just there, and you want it on all the areas that are going to be exposed," said Van Voorhees

She says people don't realize how dangerous the rays can be whether it's spring, summer, winter or fall.

"If you are going to be out there for a short period of time, you are not exposing yourself to enough soon to damage yourself,” Community member Jon Olszyk said.

Doctor Van Voorhees said that's not true. "Most of our exposure is doing the things that we just don't even think about, like going from our house to into the car or maybe going to the supermarket. It's not what it is going to the beach for a summer vacation"

She says it's crucial to wear long sleeves and hats to protect your body from the sun. Dr. Van Voorhees also says it's crucial to check your body for moles.

Van Voorhees explained, “I look at the front, by just looking in the mirror and I look down and I hold a second mirror at my back. I try to do that on the anniversary of my birthday every month."

If you find something abnormal, meaning the mole doesn't look round, doesn’t have a smooth edge and if it has different colors call your doctor and get an appointment to be checked.

"If it is caught early, then that is a wonderful thing. It can simply be cut out and they can live their life," said Van Voorhees.

(© 2017 WVEC)


JOIN THE CONVERSATION

To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment