Almost a quarter of Australians photograph their skin to keep track of moles, with an estimated 100 million potentially life-saving images taken every year, according to recent research.
The skin checking app Miiskin conducted a nationally representative survey of 1,003 Australian adults. It found that 24 per cent of Australians have taken photos of their lesions to track suspicious changes.
Further, nearly a third of 25-34-year-olds are photographing their skin at least once a month.
The survey found that 45 per cent of respondents were worried about the risk of skin cancer because of the recent hot weather and the notorious Australian summer, yet only 34 per cent said they always use sunscreen when exposed to the sun.
Fifteen per cent of respondents believed it would be safer to use a tanning bed than to get a tan from the sun, and 11 per cent admitted they would rather have a month without alcohol than a month without tanning their skin.
Awareness of the importance of skin monitoring is increasing. Three quarters of respondents knew it was important to check for new moles. However, 13 per cent thought they only needed to monitor their skin if a medical professional had told them to.
Technology should never replace the advice of a medical professional, but early detection of skin cancer is vital to successful treatment, so regular monitoring allows people to notice changes in their skin and bring it to the attention of a medical professional as early as possible.