Yes, it is that time of year where we need to slather on the sunscreen and I am here to remind you to make sure that you put that sunscreen all over your feet too. Yes, your feet need protection from the sun’s rays just as your face, arms, and legs need protection. Believe it or not, the bottoms of your feet need to be protected too so make sure you put that sunscreen all over your feet.
Are you familiar with the American Academy of Dermatology’s guidelines for sunscreens, the application of sunscreen, and when you need sunscreen? To give you a summary, you need to use a sunscreen that protects from UVA and UVB rays, has an SPF of at least 30 and is water resistant. If your sunscreen of choice has these three components, then you doing great. You need to apply at least an ounce of sunscreen (think a shot glass full) and you need to reapply at least every two hours unless you have been in the water or you are sweating a lot. You can check the bottle for application instructions also. The guidelines from the AAD can be found here.
Yes, sadly, it is. The prime reasons it is so deadly is that it often goes undetected until the disease has progressed. I want you to change this. I want to you to check your feet. Yes, I want you to perform at least monthly (I am a bit obsessive because I would like you to do it weekly) checks. This check takes just a couple of minutes. Sit down on the side of the bed with a hand mirror and look at your feet. Look them over for any spots or unusual marks that you have not seen before. Take a hand mirror and really look at all sides of your foot. Look between your toes.
Do you see anything? If you do, you might want to check the ABCD’s of skin cancer.