While pre-cancerous growths and skin cancer can usually be successfully treated, the best strategy is to prevent them in the first place.

SkinCancerAwareness.com recommends the following:

  1. Choose your parents wisely as a family history of skin cancer puts you at increased risk for skin cancer. [This is obviously facetious.]
  2. Avoid sunburns
  3. Cover up with clothing; wear a broad-rim hat for sun protection
  4. Avoid tanning and never use a tanning bed, tanning booth, or sun lamp. Get a spray tan if you must have a tanned look.
  5. Stay in the shade when outdoors or bring an umbrella/ sunbrella. “Living the Shady Life”
  6. Use a sunscreen preferably with a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of 30 or higher about 1-2 hours before you go outside. A higher SPF over 30 can also be used to protect yourself from the sun. Reapply sunscreen every 2 hours if you are swimming or have excessive sweating.
  7. Examine your skin once a month when showering. You may need to get a partner to examine areas that you cannot personally see on yourself such as your back, buttocks, back of your neck, back of your scalp, and back of your thighs. A phone camera device may enable you to see some of these areas.
  8. Make regular appointments for a skin examination with a dermatologist or other trained medical professional.