My dermatologist is emphatic about yearly checks, and I've also had it asked about by my OB/GYN and GP whether I'm doing yearly checks. I am pale with freckles, very few moles though. But my dermatologist advocates for everyone to have yearly checks and wear sunscreen daily.I had a precancerous thing on my face several years back that I only noticed because it was on my face, and I wouldn't have thought it was pre-cancerous, just a vague discoloration. Maybe you can find a compromise between five years and yearly? Maybe every two or two and a half years? And in the interim be very vigilant about keeping an eye on any changes you can see on yourself. I don't think it's necessarily low risk for everybody at this point in time, with the ozone being what it is. I know it's traumatic for you, so obviously it's a big trade off when you have to deal with things like this. And I'm saying this partly from the perspective of someone who didn't get around to two or three mammograms and ended up with a cancer diagnosis that was a little more advanced than it would have been if I'd gone regularly, so I don't think I'll delay any in in the future. Just my thoughts.
I'm unclear -- is your dermatologist aware of your trauma history, and are there any work arounds she might consider? Like, maybe not a full body check, but areas you're more comfortable with, or with a certain amount of clothing on, like a bathing suit? It seems like some exam would be better than no exam.
ETA: Just to be clear, I'm not in any way trying to minimize how traumatic these exams are for you. And you were a rock star for getting through it the other day.