Warning: Graphic Images
Once upon a time, Jess Pasco probably would have ignored the little pimple under her nose.
When it disappeared but left a small patch of dry redness behind, the 32-year-old might not think much about it.
But her shock experience with Melanoma just a year earlier, she took her to the doctor to look at it, just to be sure.
Good thing too. That innocent pimple was a potentially serious skin cancer called basal cell carcinoma.
"A year earlier, I would not have known what you're looking for," Ms. Pascal told news.com.au.
"Like most people, I thought skin cancer was just a black wound. If I was not conscious as I'm now, I would not think of him and would ignore it."
Left too long, it could have developed into a far more aggressive cancer and eventually spread over her body.
She took it early but it was far from walking in the park for the perennial officials who had a reaction to the treatment process.
"When you have a skin cancer on your face, cutting it out is not really preferable. It could leave a pretty big scar. I was given the cream for eight weeks that basically gets your immune system to attack the cancer.
"I had a sharp reaction, it was a massive pain – much more than the cancer itself, it was really red, painful pu-full, I had it for probably four months."
As uncomfortable as it made you, and despite all the questions it has prompted, Passko said it was much better than the alternative.
Famous 12 months earlier, she was in her GP for a check-up when she decided to ask him about a strange-looking freckle on her leg.
"I was living in Melbourne for a while before seeing a freckle that had grown up and changed color, but I did not really do anything about it.
"The doctor told me if I was concerned, I could have it cut out and then I had a few stitches but they did not take, which is apparently a sign of cancer."
Biopsy results revealed it was a level of three melanoma, the stage before it spread elsewhere in the body, and would have to be completely removed.
The skin cancer rates in New Zealand and Australia are the highest in the world, about four times higher than in Canada, It. And the UK.
"Skin scratches can be present in many forms, it may be a painful, itching, scaly skin, tenderness, a strange freckles, a wart that changes in size or color. There are many signs," Dr. Saly Phillips of Life Insurance Specialist Tale said.
"We know that we have to do preventive things – the slip, slap, messenger message – but I think the message is more about detection.
Research commissioned by Tal found only 36 percent of people have had a skin control over the past 12 months, and 30 percent have never had one.
Research suggests that two in three new zealers will develop a non-melanoma skin cancer in their lives.
"Our research has shown that people think it's a hard thing to do and they do not know where to go." The knowing price is a problem for some, "said Dr. Phillips.
There is also an idea that a check is a time consuming or inconvenient.
"But really, there is a 15-minute appointment and it's so easy."
"There are things that we can do as you stand in front of a mirror for a 10-month period and get to know our skin, and once a year you should get to a GP or a skin cancer clinic for a thorough check. "
The survival rate for early stage melanoma is 98 per cent, but that figure slumps to less than 50 per cent for stage four skin concerts.
"Fifteen minutes can save your life and save you so much mourning as well."