There are not firm consensus guidelines on how frequently to screen for skin cancer, but in general, every adult should have a baseline exam and individuals with risk factors for melanoma or non-melanoma skin cancers should be screened at least annually. Risk factors include personal medical history or family history of skin cancer, certain physical features such as number of moles, blonde or red hair, fair skin, and UV radiation exposure, including both sun and tanning booths. The American Academy of Dermatology also recommends that everyone perform regular skin self-exams to detect skin cancer early, when it’s most treatable. Those who notice any new or suspicious spots on their skin, as well as anything changing, itching or bleeding, should see a board-certified dermatologist.
Use this infographic to help perform regular skin self-exams: