According to the Canadian Skin Cancer Foundation, during the average calendar year, over 6,800 Canadians will be diagnosed with melanoma or some form of moderate to severe skin cancer, and unfortunately, about 1,800 of these cases will be proven deadly1. While this statistic is concerning, there are several ways that we can help to educate ourselves about signs of melanoma as well as melanoma prevention. When it comes to melanoma and cancer prevention, awareness is a very important first step. 

What Is Melanoma? 
Melanoma is a particularly aggressive form of skin cancer, often presenting as a mole or discolouration of the skin that can change shape and size rapidly. What makes melanoma more aggressive than other forms of skin cancer including basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma is its ability to very quickly and severely spread to and damage other organs of the body. Melanoma and skin cancer awareness goes a long way in preventing and spotting melanoma before it has the ability to cause harm or even death. 

How To Spot Melanoma
Unlike certain cancers that metastasize inside the body, melanoma develops on the surface of the skin, which gives us the advantage of discovering it quickly if you know what to look for. Melanoma often presents itself as a new or changing mole, skin mark, or skin discolouration. 

Melanoma may look like a regular mole or even a birthmark, but the sign that it may not be benign is a change in appearance. If you notice a new mole or mark on your skin that is misshapen, changes shape, changes colour or grows in size, these are all indicators that you should visit your doctor as soon as possible. 

How To Help Prevent Melanoma 
Melanoma and cancer awareness can save your life, as there are ways to help prevent melanoma and decrease the chances of developing skin cancer. As most cases of melanoma develop from long-term and unprotected exposure to UV rays from the sun, practicing proper sun safety and skincare can really help to reduce your chances of developing melanoma. A few of the best things you can do to protect yourself from skin cancer include: 

  • Seeking shade between 10 AM and 4 PM 
  • Avoid sunburns 
  • Avoid tanning, including tanning beds 
  • Use a broad-spectrum UVA/UVB sunscreen 
  • Apply 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) of sunscreen to your body 30 minutes before leaving the house 
  • Keep newborns out of the sun 
  • Apply sunscreen to babies older than 6 months of age
  • Examine your skin once a month 
  • Visit a dermatologist for a professional skin assessment once a year 
  • Cover your skin with light fabrics like cotton on a hot summer day

Critical Illness Insurance With Chubb Life
While taking steps like wearing sunscreen and covering your skin can significantly reduce your risk of developing skin cancer, unfortunately, illnesses do arise out of our control. If you were to experience skin cancer, the best-case scenario is to be prepared with critical illness insurance through Hudson’s Bay Financial Services and Chubb Life. With proper critical illness insurance, you can focus on resting and recovering instead of the financial hardships that can potentially arise from falling ill. 

Critical Illness insurance provides you with the assurance that if you were to fall ill, you could focus on recovering with your family instead of any potential financial stress. With over 23 critical illnesses covered, our insurance goes beyond just heart issues to cover your expenses. Get A Free No-Obligation Life Insurance Quote

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Critical Illness Insurance is offered by Hudson’s Bay Financial Services and is underwritten by Chubb Life Insurance Company of Canada (“Chubb Life”). This information is for general information purposes only. Actual coverage is determined by the facts and circumstances of the particular loss and the terms and conditions of the policy as issued.

Chubb Life is part of the Chubb Group of companies. With operations in 54 countries, Chubb provides commercial and personal property and casualty insurance, personal accident and supplemental health insurance, reinsurance and life insurance to a diverse group of clients. Chubb Limited, the parent company of Chubb, is listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: CB) and is a component of the S&P 500 index.

1www.canadianskincancerfoundation.com/skin-cancer