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While most people worry only about skin care in the summer when they are getting ready to go to the beach, skin cancer can strike all year round – even in the winter. Simply putting on a little sunscreen before you head to the lake for the day isn’t enough. Here are five skin cancer prevention tips that we at May River Dermatology encourage our patients in Bluffton to follow in every season.

1. Wear Sunscreen

While you likely receive less sun exposure in the winter than you do in the summer, if you are like most Americans, you still receive far more sun exposure than you realize. From running outside to get the mail to driving around in your car, your skin is still exposed to the sun and you still need to wear sunscreen on a daily basis.

2. Avoid Tanning Beds

Contrary to what some people believe, tanning beds are not a safe alternative to the sun, even in small doses. Tanning beds still emit both UVA and UVB light, typically in much greater concentration than you would receive from sunlight. Any time your skin changes color, it is a sign that your skin has been damaged, no matter what light source the color comes from.

3. Use Caution Around Windows

Did you know you can actually get a sunburn sitting inside? It’s true. While windows do block UVB rays, they don’t block UVA rays. This means that you can still get sun damage just by sitting inside next to a window or driving around in your car day after day. This doesn’t mean that you should avoid windows – only that you should make sure to wear sunscreen if you’ll be next to a window all day.

4. Perform Routine Self-Examinations

If you do begin to develop skin cancer, you’ll want to know immediately so you can visit May River Dermatology and start treatment right away. The best way to discover signs of skin cancer quickly is to perform routine self-examinations. Check over your entire body looking for suspicious spots, sores, moles or discoloration.

5. Visit May River Dermatology, LLC 

If you do find any unusual spots, or have had a high amount of sun exposure, visit your dermatologist just to be safe. Your skin protects your body, and it relies on you to take good care of it. Visit May River Dermatology, LLC in Bluffton or Hilton Head Island  for a routine check-up.