May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month and at Texas Foot Specialists we’d like to use this as an opportunity to remind our patients you can get cancer on the skin of your feet. Many people don’t think about their feet when applying sunscreen—especially if they’re not going to the beach or pool. The skin on your feet, however, is just as vulnerable to the harmful rays of the sun as anyplace else on your body. For this reason, it’s essential that you apply a sunscreen with SPF of 15 or higher when you will be out for the day in sandals or other open-style shoes.
Other ways to protect your feet from skin cancer include:
Limit exposure to the sun during the times when it is strongest: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen that protects against UVA and UVB rays.
Don’t be fooled—you can still get a bad sunburn on a cloudy day.
Reapply sunscreen every two hours or after swimming or perspiring heavily.
Never use UV tanning beds.
Get in the habit of examining your skin periodically to check for unusual moles or freckles.
Know the signs of potentially cancerous moles: asymmetrical in shape (meaning if you were to draw a line through the middle of the mole, the two halves would not look the same), irregular borders, varied and mottled color that may include shades of tan, brown, red, blue or black, a diameter larger than ¼ of an inch. Also, any mole that seems to be growing or changing in appearance should be reported to our podiatrists Dr. Bruce Miller and Dr. Gregory Mangum immediately.
Not all skin cancers are the result of exposure to UV light. In some cases, genetics, chemical or environmental factors can be the underlying cause. Early detection and treatment provide the best outcomes, so don’t hesitate to contact our Sugar Land (281-242-4448), Pasadena (281-991-0600) or Houston (713-664-6677) office if you have any concerns about a spot on your foot or toes.