What You Should Know This Melanoma Monday

One in five Americans will develop skin cancer in his or her lifetime, according to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD). Here’s what you should know–and do–to reduce your risk.

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May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month, kicking off with Melanoma Monday on May 2. Melanoma is the deadliest form of skin cancer, with 144,860 new cases expected to be diagnosed this year. It often develops from an existing mole or appears as a new dark spot on the skin.

Anyone can get melanoma. Men over the age of 50, with many years of sun exposure, are at higher risk than other age groups. “My dad died of melanoma at 69. He was an avid tennis player who was outdoors, on the court, practically every weekend from Memorial Day to Labor Day,” said Geri Brin, Founder of FabOverFifty. “He died months after diagnosis. If only we know then what we know now, about this deadly disease and how to prevent it.”

What you must do

The first step in protecting against melanoma, for both you and your family, is prevention and early detection. It is crucial to wear broad-spectrum sunscreen with Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of 30 or higher to protect your skin from harmful UV rays. It’s important to regularly check your skin for new moles and growths. If you see anything changing, itching or bleeding, you should see a board-certified dermatologist.

You can identify the warning signs of melanoma with the following A, B, C, D, E’ s:

a-d
A
symmetry

One half of the mole is noticeably unlike the other half.

Border

The mole has an irregular, scalloped or poorly defined border.

Color

The colors of the growth Is varied from one area to another; it may have shades of tan, brown or black, or is sometimes white, red, or blue.

Diameter

Melanomas are usually greater than 6mm (the size of a pencil eraser) when diagnosed, but they can be smaller.

Evolving

A mole or skin lesion that looks different from other moles on your body or is changing in size, shape or color.

what-to-look-for-evolving

Why early detection is key

When left untreated, melanomas can spread to other parts of the body, including lymph nodes. When detected in its earliest stages, however, it is highly treatable. “The average five-year survival rate for an individual whose melanoma is detected and treated before it spreads to the lymph nodes is 98 percent,” according to AAD. If it spreads to nearby lymph nodes, the five-year survival rate goes down to 63 percent. If it spreads to distant organs and lymph nodes, the five-year survival rate is only 17 percent.

How is melanoma treated?

Melanoma is treated through surgical excision. Your dermatologist will decide how much skin around the melanoma will need to be removed. Melanomas in later stages can require additional cancer treatments and therapies.

Get your skin checked

As part of its “Looking Good in 2016” campaign, the American Academy of Dermatology wants to make sure skin cancer prevention is a healthcare priority and is offering free SPOTme® Skin Cancer screenings all over the country.

Find out where you can have a free skin cancer screening here.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of American Academy of Dermatology. The opinions and text are all mine.

Yes, Virginia, Estrogen Therapy IS Good For You

Dr. Tara Allmen is a “51-year-old girl” who realized she “really had a passion for midlife women’s health, for the above 40 crowd,”  when she was a practicing obgyn in her early 30s.

I think I delivered about a million babies at that point, and while I loved the practice of obstetrics (the care of reproductive aged women), there was something very special for me about taking care of women after their reproductive period was over.  I felt a passion and a mission to start educating women, because once you’re done making babies you’re sort of tossed aside for the next group of women coming up the pike, and nobody educates you about what’s next for you.

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28 Superfood Recipes For Every Day, a new e-book from the Institute for Vibrant Living, offers four sections of recipes incorporating superfoods. You may remember IVL from its e-book of delicious heart healthy recipes, so we’re excited to share its newest e-book today. Here are four of our favorites! (more…)

The Important Thing Missing From Your Shower Routine

These women on the street were surprised to learn that they’ve been washing their bodies all wrong!

Once you’ve watched the video, click here to wash your body all right!

This post is brought to you by Lubrigyn. Thank you for supporting FabOverFifty!

Why You Shouldn’t Shower With Soap

A whopping seventy-three (73) percent of over 500 women who participated in an exclusive FabOverFifty poll revealed that they use body wash or soap to cleanse their vaginas. Only 13 percent pass the test, and use vaginal cleansing wash. So what do the 13 percent of women probably know that the vast majority of us don’t?

showerThey likely know that perfumed body washes and soaps can irritate the sensitive skin down there, because even if you’re a thick-skinned kind of gal, that doesn’t apply to your vagina. As we age, this delicate skin starts to lose natural oils, just like the skin on the rest of our bodies, which can cause itching, pain, dryness, and even bleeding. Besides menopause, vaginal dryness can be caused by diabetes and antidepressants.

Although most of our mothers, and doctors, didn’t tell us how to cleanse our vaginas, it’s no longer taboo to talk about them. And, what we’re learning from those who finally are speaking up, is that sexual health is pretty darn important, physically and emotionally. Fortunately, more companies than ever before are creating products that can help us stay sexually healthy. Uniderm, based in Italy, is one of them and it’s come to America with its intimate hygiene line, called Lubrigyn.

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A sea change is taking place in the medical profession: Many female doctors, who once practiced gynecology and obstetrics, are dropping the obstetrical part of their practices to concentrate on the feminine sexual health of their aging patients.

This is a significant development for women in perimenopause or menopause, who now are opening up more about the dramatic physical–and mental–changes they’re experiencing, and turning to their doctors for advice and help.

doctorDr. Alyssa Dweck is one of these doctors. Based in Mt. Kisco, New York, she has been in practice for over 20 years and is associated with Northern Westchester Hospital. She also is an assistant clinical professor at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York, and has an appointment with Mass General in Boston.

FabOverFifty was pleased to sit down with Dr. Dweck to discuss this exciting news for our community.  She’s “thrilled” about the attention being focused on feminine sexual health.

WE ARE, TOO!  
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Provide Pleasure for Your Man in a New Place (On His Body)

header-lineThe reason could be physical. Or, he’s so anxious about finances, he can’t focus on lovemaking.

Landmark studies by University of Chicago researchers found that one-third of men between 50 and 64 years old suffer from erectile dysfunction, and that figure jumps to approximately 44 percent for men between 65 and 85. Although most of these men have the option to take drugs to stimulate erection, many simply refuse.

Even though your partner can’t satisfy you with a traditional erection, there are enough alternatives to keep you happy.  But you love him and you know he’s frustrated, and upset. If both of you are willing to try something new that will give him great satisfaction, if not an erection, try giving him a prostate massage.

LELO, the world leader in intimate lifestyle products, saw a 200% sales increase in male anal pleasure products in 2015, and expects as much as a 400% increase in 2016. “This will be the year we see a huge revolution in mainstream sexual attitudes,” says Steve Thomson, chief marketing officer at LELO. If you’re blushing or horrified at the thought of this, it might help to know a little about this small male gland. We asked Dr. Elizabeth Kavaler, a New York urologist in private practice, to be our teacher.
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