When you think about skin cancer, a few problem areas likely come to mind.
Like the face, scalp, or legs.
And while those are commonly affected by the disease… remember that our skin is the largest organ in our body.
Which means skin cancer can occur in some pretty unusual places…
Including where the sun don’t shine.
Skin cancer can strike anywhere
Skin cancer is very common among Americans. And it’s usually caused by sun damage.
That’s why the places most exposed to the sun—like your face and limbs—are commonly affected.
But let’s take a look at some of those other places where you may find skin cancer:
- Eyes. The irises of your eyes, or the colored part of your eye around the pupil, can develop “skin” cancer. In fact, if you notice any new spots of color in your irises, seek medical attention right away.
To help protect your eyes, I suggest wearing sunglasses at all times during the day, even when it’s cloudy. Think about it… our eyes are exposed as much as (if not more) than other parts of the body to the sun.
- This is relatively new spot for “skin” cancer and can be linked back to the popularity of gel manicures, which use UV lights to dry the nail polish. (Think of it as a “tanning bed” for your nails… and just skip it.)
- Rear end. More specifically, the “butt crack” or anus. This usually occurs in those who sunbathe in their birthday suit. If that sounds like you, make sure your dermatologist pays attention to all areas during their skin check, especially places you can’t see yourself.
- If you have crustiness inside your ear canal that doesn’t go away with washing the area, it may be skin cancer.
- I’ve seen melanoma under the tongue before. While this area doesn’t get much UV light exposure from the sun, it’s possible the cancer metastasized from a different site.
- Scalp. You may think this is obvious, but it’s not-so-obvious for those with hair. Many people tend to forget about their scalp. And since this is one of the most common places to get skin cancer, make sure to add it to your yearly skin check. This is also why I recommend wearing a hat in the sun.
Double check your skin and concerns
As you can see, skin cancers are not just moles or unusual growths.
The bottom line?
First and foremost, protect yourself against prolonged sun exposure. I recently provided you with three sensible tips—click here to read more.
Then, be sure to visit a dermatologist regularly (for medical reasons, not cosmetic procedures like Botox). Be sure to share your personal history of sun exposure and ask that they check every nook and cranny. (Don’t be shy!)
Heck, even I have had a little skin cancer removed! Of course, that was many years ago before it dawned on me that we remove far too many skin cancers—but no one talks about that. I mean, one goes to see a dermatologist for a skin check and ends up getting zapped right, left, and sideways.
So, my final recommendation is to know what you’re looking for—and when to be concerned. New spots—especially ones that are changing quickly, are itchy and crusty, bleeding or misshapen, or are oddly colored—are huge red flags.
You can learn more about what you should consider before “going under the knife” in the May 2018 issue of my monthly newsletter, Logical Health Alternatives (“How you can get the life-saving benefits of the sun this summer—without putting your skin at risk”).
Subscribers have access to that and all of my past content in the archives. So if you haven’t already, consider signing up today. Click here to learn more!
“Skin cancer isn’t just for skin: 7 surprising places the disease can emerge.” StudyFinds, 04/08/2023. (studyfinds.org/skin-cancer-surprising-sites/)