Case Managers – July 2022

Case Managers – July 2022



Our Largest Organ
I remember a trivia question from about fifth grade; What is our largest organ? Our skin! When we stop and think about our skin as an organ, it makes more sense that we would regularly screen it for cancer similar to our colon, breasts, lungs and prostate.


What is Skin Cancer Screening?
A “screening” is looking for signs of cancer before the person has symptoms. For skin cancer, a visual screening should be done by a doctor on a regular basis and self-screenings can be done in between professional screenings.


When Should Screening Start?
Generally, we should start screening for skin cancer in our 20s. Screening needs to start sooner if we have a family or personal history of skin cancer. At any age, we should report anything out of the ordinary to our doctor.


What to look for? html#All_ages has detailed steps on conducting self-exams, which I recommend reading. Here is an overview of tips and things to watch for:
1. Conduct your self screening after a bath or shower, in bright light.
2. Scan your body from head to toe starting with your scalp. There are going to be hard to see spots of which you can use a mirror or a family member.
3. Do this on a regular basis, such as on Saturdays or on the first of the month.


What to Watch For:
• A growth that increases in size and appears pearly, transparent, tan, brown, black or multicolored.
• A mole, birthmark or brown spot that increases in size, thickness, changes color or texture or is bigger than a pencil eraser.
• A spot or sore that continues to itch, hurt, crust, scab or bleed.
• An open sore that does not heal within three weeks.


If you see any of these or anything unusual, report to your doctor immediately. Skin cancer is most often detected in people 65 and older, so it’s crucial to report findings. Too much sun can highly increase your chance of skin cancer, damage your eyes, create excess wrinkles and lead to dehydration or even sun poisoning. Check out Drake’s article on page 15 for tips on protecting yourself and enjoying the sun safely!


July marks the middle of Summer and a great time to make your end of Summer bucket list! Is there anything that you haven’t done that you want to do? Anyone you want to see while the weather is nice? It’s time to get planning since the second half of summer always goes by so fast! As for me, I hope to kayak at least three more times! Take care,


Julie Larson, Lead Case Manager





Enjoy, but Be Safe
The start of July means hot temperatures, outdoor activities and most of all sunshine! The sun is a double-edged sword. On one hand, its wonderful rays bring us vital vitamins, but too much of it can lead to a slew of issues. Let’s learn the benefits of our friend in the solar system, as well as how to stay safe.


WebMD has an interesting article online titled “Sunlight and Your Health.” Give it a read if you are interested in more detail. Here is a list of benefits of UV rays from the article: Vitamin D: The sun’s UV rays help our bodies create this vitamin which is incredibly important. Vitamin D helps us retain minerals, strengthen our bones, leads to a healthy immune system and functioning blood cells. Helps you Sleep: Early morning sunlight helps your body’s internal clock keep itself regular, leading to more normal bedtimes and restful sleep. Weight Loss: Scientists believe that 20 to 30 minutes of early morning sunlight can actually shrink fat cells. Mental Health: The sun is shown to increase serotonin production in the brain which is a chemical that helps us feel calm and positive. Lack of sunlight has been shown to lower your serotonin levels and increase the chance of depression.


Be Safe in the Sun
It is crucial to pace yourself and not overdo sun exposure. Here are a few ways you can protect yourself while enjoying the sunshine.
1. Generously apply water-resistant sunscreen with an SPF no lower than 30. Reapply every few hours or after getting wet.
2. Wear protective clothing such as a hat (especially if you lack hair) or long sleeves 3. Wear sunglasses! When shopping for a new pair, make sure they are not just for show and actually offer UV protection, as bright sunlight damages your eyes.
4. Be careful near water, snow and sand. These environments reflect rays of the sun and increase chances of a sunburn.
5. Use shade to your  advantage. The sun is at its strongest between 10 AM and 4 PM and prolonged exposure is even more dangerous during these hours.
6. Stay hydrated! This is crucial for feeling well while outside in hot temperatures.


Enjoy the summer sun, just be safe and take precautions to make sure you are not overdoing it and damaging your body.


Happy July everyone! Fireworks, cookouts, late nights and storms are a few of my favorite things that this Summer month has to offer. I hope you and your families can enjoy some of the same!


Drake Deno, Case Manager