FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

What about Suncreens?

When should sunscreen be used?
Every day if you are going to be in the sun for more than 20 minutes.

The sun’s reflective powers are 17% on sand and 80% on snow.

Even on a cloudy day 80% of the sun’s UV rays pass through the clouds.

How much sunscreen should be used, and how often should it be applied?
Should be applied to dry skin 15-30 minutes BEFORE going outdoors.

Coat skin liberally.

Pay attention to the face, ears, hands and arms.

What type of sunscreen should I use?
Should be water resistant, so they are not easily removed by sweating or swimming.
Should have and SPF of 15 or higher.

Sunscreen and SPF Numbers?

Does SPF 30 have twice as much sun protection as SPF 15?
SPF protection does not actually increase proportionately with a designed SPF number. In higher SPFs such as SPF 30, 97% of sun burning rays re deflected, while an SPF of 15 indicates 93% deflection and an SPF of 2 equals 50% deflection.

Cancer Prevention

Do not sunbathe.

Avoid unnecessary sun exposure, especially between 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., the peak hours for harmful ultraviolet (UV) radiation.

When outdoors, use sunscreens rated SPF or higher. Apply them liberally, uniformly and frequently.

When exposed to sunlight, wear protective clothing such as long pants, long-sleeved shirts, broad-brimmed hats, and UV-protective sunglasses.

Stay away from artificial tanning devices.

Teach your children good sun protection habits at an early age: The damage that leads to adult skin cancers starts in childhood.

Examine your skin from head to toe at least once every three months.

Have an annual full-body skin exam, performed by a dermatologist or primary care physicians.

Full-body skin exam should be done once every year.

Any suspicious lesion should be treated and follow up should be with a dermatologist.

Is Melanoma A Serious Disease?
Nearly 75% of all skin cancer deaths are from melanoma.

Advanced melanoma spreads into internal organs and may result in death. If detected in the early stages, melanoma usually can be treated successfully.

What Causes Melanoma?
The most important preventable cause is excessive exposure to the ultraviolet radiation of the sun

Melanoma has been linked to excessive sun exposure in the first 10 to 18 years of life

Not all melanomas are sun related. Other possible causes include genetic factors and immune system deficiencies.

  • What should I look for when examining my skin?

    Asymmetry- one half is unlike the other. Border- Irregular, scalloped or poorly defined border. Color- Varied from one area to another: shades of tan and brown, black, sometimes white, red, or blue. Diameter- Larger than 6mm as a rule (a diameter of a pencil eraser).

  • What are the warning signs of a basal cell?

    Early detection is best.

  • An open sore that bleeds, oozes, or crusts and remains open for three to more weeks. A reddish patch of irritated area, frequently occurring on the chest, shoulders, arms, or legs. A shiny bump or nodule that is pearly or translucent and is often pink, red, or white. The bump can also be tan, black, or brown and can be confused with a mole. A pink growth with a slightly elevated, rolled border and a crusted indentation in the center. A scar-like area which is white, yellow, or waxy and often has poorly defined borders.

  • Squamous Cell

    What does a squamous cell look like?

  • A wart-like growth that crusts and occasionally bleeds. A persistent, scaly, red patch with irregular borders that sometimes crusts or bleeds. An open sore that bleeds and crusts and persists for weeks. An elevated growth with a central depression that occasionally bleeds. A growth of this type may rapidly increase in size.

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