Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Greenville Dermatology Supports ‘Don’t Fry Day’ to Prepare Families for Summer

Last Friday, Greenville Dermatology hosted our first ever ”Don’t Fry Day” event to encourage sun safety and raise awareness of skin cancer in support of the National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention. It was a huge success!

We handed out 1,000 free bottles of sunscreen and T-shirts at high-traffic pedestrian and shopping areas as everyone was heading outside to kick off the Memorial Day holiday. We also shared tips for keeping skin safe during the hot summer months.

Some of the important tips we shared for staying safe in the sun include:

·         Applying sunscreen generously and often
·         Wearing sun protective clothing, a hat and sunglasses
·         Seeking shade as often as possible

In addition to these preventive measures, it is also important to schedule regular skin screenings. In fact, 99 percent of skin cancers are curable if caught early, and skin screenings play a large role in detecting skin cancer in the early, treatable stages. Exams are painless, only take 15 minutes and could save your life.

While skin cancer affects people of all races and skin types, those with lighter skin or who burn easily are at a higher risk of developing this deadly disease over time. You should have regular skin screenings if:

·         You have an immediate family member who has had melanoma
·         You have had even one case of severe sunburn, especially if you are fair skinned
·         You are age 40 or older, especially if you have fair skin and if you have had prolonged exposure to the sun

Click here to learn more about detecting skin cancer.

Stop by Greenville Dermatology for a skin screening and to stock up on sunscreen before you head outside this summer. Contact our office at (864) 242-5872 to schedule an appointment. 

Monday, May 19, 2014

Greenville Dermatology Promotes National 'Don't Fry Day' for Skin Cancer Awareness Month

Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States. More than 3.5 million skin cancers in more than two million people are diagnosed annually. That means one in five Americans will develop skin cancer in the course of a lifetime, according to the American Cancer Society.

However, skin cancer is also the most preventable type of cancer. Through education, early detection and protection, the number of skin cancer diagnoses in the future can diminish drastically. In fact, 99 percent of skin cancers are curable if caught in early stages.

Being able to identify the warning signs of skin cancer will help increase your chances of surviving. The American Cancer Society has created an easy way to identify your risk of developing skin cancer. It’s as easy as remembering your ABCDE’s.

Be on the lookout for moles or birthmarks that are not symmetrical. The best way to determine this is to draw an imaginary line down the middle of the mole. If one half of the mole does not match the other, it is asymmetrical and could potentially be a sign of melanoma – the deadliest type of skin cancer.

If the edges of a mole are irregular, ragged, notched, or blurred, it could be an early sign of developing melanoma. Non-cancerous moles tend to have more smooth, rounded borders. 

Keep an eye on the color of your moles. If a mole displays various shades of brown, black, pink, red, white, or blue, it could be a sign of melanoma.

Most non-cancerous moles are fairly small and harmless. However, if your mole is larger than six millimeters across (or the size of a pencil eraser), it is a good idea to get it checked by your dermatologist.

If your mole has changed in size, shape, or color, it could be an indication that melanoma has started to develop and you should schedule an appointment with your dermatologist immediately.  

In addition to remembering your ABCDE’s, it is important to schedule annual skin cancer screenings with your dermatologist and keep your skin protected from the sun.

The National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention recently declared Friday, May 23 – the Friday before Memorial Day – as “Don’t Fry Day” to encourage sun safety awareness and prevent the development of skin cancer.

Greenville Dermatology will be hitting the streets on Don’t Fry Day to support the National Council’s efforts to raise awareness. Our street teams will be handing out free sunscreen to parents, children and passersby at local parks and high-traffic shopping areas throughout Greenville on Don’t Fry Day.

Be on the lookout for the Greenville Dermatology team at the following locations from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. on National Don’t Fry Day, Friday, May 23:

·         Augusta Road
·         Cabella’s in Magnolia Park
·         Cleveland Park
·         Greenridge Shopping Center
·         Falls Park
·         Main Street in Downtown Greenville

If you miss us on Don’t Fry Day, call Greenville Dermatology to schedule a skin cancer screening at (864) 242-5872 or visit our retail store today to stock up on sunscreen.

Monday, May 12, 2014

The Link Between Skin Cancer and What We Eat

Although skin cancer is largely preventable, it is still the most common cancer in the United States. In addition to protecting our exposed skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays, researchers and experts recommend protecting our skin from a different angle—from the inside out.

Researchers are studying the links between specific foods and skin cancers and have begun to make strides in identifying foods that may help to prevent some cancers, including skin cancer.

Vitamin D and Vitamin C both appear to have a protective effect against skin cancer. While Vitamin D appears to be effective in the fight against existing cancer cells, Vitamin C is one of the best immune enhancements available, and can reduce an individual’s chance of developing cancer from the beginning.

In addition to these vitamins, a diet in plant-based foods and low in processed foods offers the best chance for overall good health. Eliminating flours and other highly processed foods can keep skin and other body systems healthy. It also keeps the body from being more susceptible to damage.

According to Jennifer Burton, a registered dietician with OhioHealth who works with patients at both the Bing Cancer Center and the McConnell Heart Health Center, “People who have a healthy diet will hold up better during treatment should they develop skin cancer. They will have a better environment in the body to begin with, and what they eat during and after treatment can have an impact on whether the cancer is going to spread or whether they will have a recurrence.”

Above all else, the best foods for skin cancer prevention are fruits and vegetables. Good fats like avocado, flaxseed and nuts can also help ward off disease. Carotenoids found in dark, leafy greens and fruits or vegetables that are red, yellow and orange appear to have a particularly strong impact on preventing skin cancer.

In addition to eating whole, clean food, it is also beneficial to keep protecting your skin from the outside elements. Before you step outside this summer, be sure to apply sunscreen, wear a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses and schedule your annual skin cancer screening with Greenville Dermatology by calling (864) 242-5872 today. 

Monday, May 5, 2014

Answers.com: The Sunscreen Controversy

The following is a preview of an article Dr. Miller wrote for Answers.com. Click here to read the full article.

Sunscreens have been commercially available in the United States since the late 1960's. We now use sunscreens with high sun protection factor (SPF) but this apparently has not been enough since the incidence of skin cancer has continued to rise. This has led to controversy over whether the use of sunscreens may or may not increase an individual’s risk of skin cancer.

Is There a Problem with the Sun Protection Factor (SPF)?
Most people understand the concept that the higher the sun protection factor (SPF), the stronger the sunscreen. However, few people truly understand what it means. If you get sunburned within five minutes of being in the sun without sunscreen, then using a sunscreen with an SPF of 15 indicates that you could stay in the sun for 15 times five minutes or 75 minutes before getting sunburnt. The problem is that the SPF only applies to the amount of protection against the UVB rays of the sun, which cause sunburn, and does not indicate how much UVA protection there is. It is hypothesized that we are using sunscreen that prevents us from being sunburned, and therefore we are staying in the sun longer than ever before. This allows us to get more UVA than we got before the advent of sunscreens. In other words, sunscreens have given us a false sense of security that we are completely protecting ourselves from the sun when we actually are not.

What Has Been Done to Improve Our Level of Protection?
The FDA has recognized that there is potential for confusion regarding the labeling of sunscreens. Therefore, they have instituted new requirements for sunscreen labeling that helps us to choose a sunscreen that provides adequate protection and tells us how long that protection lasts. In addition to the SPF, there should be the words "broad spectrum" on the label, which indicates that there is adequate UVA protection as well. Without this wording, the sunscreen should have a warning label indicating that use of the product may lead to the development of skin cancer. In addition, the sunscreen label should indicate how long the sunscreen is sweat resistant and water resistant. There is no "sweat proof" or "water proof" sunscreen.

Sunscreen use does not cause skin cancer, but not understanding the labeling can lead to a false sense of security and allow us to get more of the cancer causing UVA rays. Understanding the labeling, using the correct amount of sunscreen, and reapplying when the sunscreen begins to wear out is important to ensure our safety.

Stop by Greenville Dermatology today to pick up your summer supply of sunscreen. To schedule your annual skin cancer screening, call (864) 242-5872.