A PLEA FOR ROUTINE MEDICAL CARE
Just do it.
- •This summer I had my first check up in three years.
- •Even though I have great health insurance and plenty of time off and work downtown where there are so many doctor opportunities.
- •Because I'm healthy! I eat well(ish) and exercise and drink so much water and sleep well. And I'm only 28! And my parents are healthy!
- •My GP noted that I am very mole-y and suggested I see a dermatologist for a mole scan.I've seen derms in the past, never for a full body mole scan.
- •Since I'm sooo healthy, I took my time asking around for recommendations and making an appointment.Though in retrospect I'm very glad I did my research and got in with a doctor with great recommendations!
- •During my initial appointment, my dermatologist decided I needed to have four moles removed immediatelyShe didn't tell me I had melanoma, but her actions and words came across pretty clearly that she thought I likely had melanoma.
- •Two surgeries later (initial excisions and re-excisions of "bad" moles that didn't have enough removed)...
- •And another surgery on the books in a couple of weeks...
- •I've been diagnosed with a syndrome that essentially means I'm very likely to get melanomaSo far, thankfully, everything removed has just been pre-cancerous 🙌🏽
- •I've since hounded many friends/coworkers/aquaintances to see their doctors for a check up, or see a dermatologist if they have weird moles (or went tanning, even just a few times)I could write a whole other list on weird moles people have shown me since knowing I've been dealing with this.
- •Sadly/thankfully more than one has since been diagnosed with melanoma or pre-cancerous growths and now they can proactively be treated.Other potential lists: tanning beds give you cancer. Practice sun safety.
- •I've been reading a lot recently that millennials don't seek out preventative health care, preferring to wait until it's bad enough that they must seek urgent care.I know many people do not have health insurance/access. Not writing to those people. Writing to people like me who are just young/lazy/infallible!
- •Not developing a relationship with a doctor that knows you when you're healthy, makes it harder when you're sick
- •And much more 💰💰💰For you, for your insurance, for our healthcare system...
- •So make one of your New Years resolutions be to go get a check up!!
- •And please please see a dermatologist if you've ever been to a tanning bed.Melanoma is the most common cancer in women under 30. My heart hurts for my diagnosed friends, but I'm so thankful they caught it. Melanoma, when caught early, is curable. But when not detected, it's not "just skin cancer" - it's cancer.