Hair Care Professionals Can Screen For Skin Cancer Lesions
The skin is a layer of protection of the whole body, but in the same time it is very sensitive to UV radiation, radiation that can cause skin lesions, including skin cancer. People with blond hair and white skin are more likely to develop skin moles, but not everybody is aware regarding their risks as over time they may progress to severe skin lesions. One of the most feared type of skin cancer is melanoma.
But what happens to a lesion that can be hardly seen or detected like one on the back, neck or one in the scalp area?
Those lesions can be seen more often by people involved in the so-called beauty industry like barbers, hairdresser professionals, make-up artists, massage therapists, etc. But do they recognize those lesions and if they recognize them do they inform their client about them?
Dr. Bailey E. from Boston – Brigham and Women's Hospital conducted a study that evaluated hairdressers ability to recognize various skin lesions, like changes in dimension, color, any itching or bleeding, also if they inform their clients regarding methods of skin protection like skin lotions with UV factor or other methods of skin protection like wearing caps, hats etc.
The study also evaluated if the hair care professionals discuss with their clients about skin changes and hair health.
The results of the study indicate that hair professionals are familiar to skin cancer lesions and look for lesions of the scalp, neck, faces when they do their work and more than 85 % recommend a visit to a dermatologist for a suspicious mole or if they changes over time.
The authors of this study concluded that “Future research should focus on creating a program that provides hair professionals with expert training and effective health communication tools to become confident and skilled skin cancer educators”.
Such educational programs could improve hairdressers abilities of recognition of skin lesions in areas that are not available for the client’s sight and by recommending early visits to specialists they can help lowering morbidity and mortality rates, especially in melanomas cases.
Most important people should learn to protect their skin and those who have moles that change their characteristics over a period of time should consider visiting a specialist.