Free Skin Cancer Screenings Available This Weekend

The month of May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month

Summer is fast approaching, and ultraviolet rays are getting stronger.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States.

That's why having regular skin cancer screenings is an important routine to follow. Skin cancers found and removed early are almost always curable, the CDC advises.

Louise Proulx, owner of Renew Beauty Med Spa at NorthPark Center in Dallas, says her staff take pride in helping people look young and more beautiful. And with all the anti-aging products on the market, sunscreen is one of their top sellers.

"We do see a lot of clients that come in asking about proper sunscreen and skin care," said Proulx.

Living in Texas, we spend a lot of time outdoors, and our location puts us at a higher risk for skin cancer. "The closer you get to the equator, the more you are going to see skin cancer," said Dr. Max Adler, dermatologist and medical director at Renew Beauty.

The American Academy of Dermatology recommends that everyone get a skin cancer check at least once per year. "We still see a lot of skin cancers in the United States," Adler explained. "We see at least 3 million skin cancers per year and at least 100 malignant melanomas."

Renew Med Spa is just one of the places doing free skin cancer screenings this weekend. Proulx says she wants to give back, and this is a topic her clients are interested in. 

"Many people have had a lot of sun exposure or tanning beds. They just want to have the facts, and its an opportunity for them to make sure they are preventing as well as correcting an issue," Proulx said.

Like with any type of cancer, early detection is key. But, some people have reservations. I got one, and it was very quick and easy. Adler wore magnification glasses and looked at my arms, finger nails, between the fingers, arm pit, neck — pretty much anywhere I get sun exposure, including my scalp.

"If a person has a lot of moles, their risk for skin cancer is greater," Adler explained. A family history of skin cancer also increases your risk.

The entire process took about 10-15 minutes.

I passed my skin cancer check. With my fair skin I've always known that I have a higher risk than most, but everyone, no matter what skin tone, should be screened.

"Everyone thinks that the majority of skin cancers happen in people with light skin, light hair, light eyes. And to a large extent that's true, but we have seen skin cancers in Latinos, African Americans, people from India, any Asians — any race can have skin cancer" Adler said.

Renew Beauty at North Park Center is doing free skin cancer screenings Saturday, May 4.

The American Cancer Society is doing Free Cancer Screenings on Saturday, May 18. Here's a list of locations participating.

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