The CareGiver Partnership: Skin Cancer Prevention Important at Every Age

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May is National Melanoma/Skin Cancer Detection and Prevention Month. Because rates increase with age, it’s important to take steps now to detect and prevent skin cancer, says Dianna Malkowski, Physician Assistant & Nutritionist with The CareGiver Partnership.

Skin cancer rates increase with age, making detection and prevention essential at every life stage.

Skin cancer can be prevented, and often even cured if found and treated early.

The American Academy of Dermatology recognizes May as Melanoma/Skin Cancer Detection and Prevention Month. Dianna Malkowski of The CareGiver Partnership reminds us that skin cancer rates rise with age and that prevention and early detection save lives.

“It’s an ideal time to remind people of all ages that skin cancer can be prevented, and often even cured if found and treated early,” says Malkowski, physician assistant and nutritionist for the national retailer of skin care, incontinence and other home health care products. “Join us in taking action to prevent skin cancer and reduce the risk of UV damage.”

Malkowski shares four ways to protect skin as we head into spring and summer:

  •     Avoiding sun exposure between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Those who must be outside should stay in the shade, especially the elderly who are at greater risk for heat-related illness.
  •     Liberally applying broad-spectrum sunscreen and lip balm with a sun protection factor of 30 or higher at least 30 minutes before going outside. Reapply every two hours, even on overcast days.
  •     Shading head, face, ears and neck with a wide-brim hat and sunglasses with 100% UVA and UVB protection.
  •     Check skin regularly for changes. Look for any growths or changes to skin, especially in the size or color of a mole. Any spread of pigmentation, scaling or bleeding, or tenderness or pain should be reported to your doctor. If you are fair and have a family history of melanoma, your risk for skin cancer is even greater.

Malkowski says that in addition to sun protection, seniors managing incontinence should take extra steps to gently cleanse and protect skin against rashes, infections and ulcers, using products formulated for aging, injury-prone skin.

For more information on summer skin care and cancer prevention, along with hundreds of other articles of interest to seniors and caregivers, visit The CareGiver Partnership blog.

Dianna Malkowski is a Board Certified Physician Assistant and Mayo Clinic trained nutritionist specializing in diabetes, cancer, wound healing, therapeutic diets and nutrition support. She serves on the board of professional advisers for The CareGiver Partnership and enjoys working with patients and caregivers alike.

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