Brits are being urged to check for this symptom of skin cancer when walking up the stairs.

Non-Melonoma skin cancer - which is one of the most common cancers in the world - sees 155,985 cases on average every year, according to Cancer Research UK.

Non-melanoma skin cancer refers to a group of cancers that slowly develop in the upper layers of the skin, NHS inform explains.

When it comes to symptoms, many of us will immediately think of lumps or patches on our skin which is often the first sign, the national health service advises.

East London and West Essex Guardian Series: Non-melanoma skin cancer refers to a group of cancers that slowly develop in the upper layers of the skin. ( Alamy/PA)Non-melanoma skin cancer refers to a group of cancers that slowly develop in the upper layers of the skin. ( Alamy/PA) (Image: Alamy/PA)

Skin Cancer symptoms to watch out for

The health experts added that non-melanoma skin cancer tends to develop in areas where your skin is regularly exposed to the sun, such as the face, ears, hands, shoulders, upper chest and back.

However, there are other signs you should be aware of that may develop at a later stage.

If the cancer spreads from where it began (this is known as Advanced melanoma), other symptoms like breathlessness could appear.

For instance, if the melanoma has spread to the lungs a person could experience breathlessness as well as coughing, or coughing up blood.

This symptom could be spotted when carrying out everyday activities such as walking up the stairs or vacuuming.

Causes of non-melanoma skin cancer

East London and West Essex Guardian Series: Non-melanoma skin cancer is one of the most common skin cancers in the world. ( PA)Non-melanoma skin cancer is one of the most common skin cancers in the world. ( PA) (Image: PA)

The main cause of non-melanoma skin cancer is the overexposure to ultraviolet (UV) light, according to the NHS.

UV light comes from the sun but it is also found in artificial tanning sunbeds and sunlamps.

However, there are other risk factors that can increase your chances of developing non-melanoma skin cancer, including:

  • a previous non-melanoma skin cancer
  • a family history of skin cancer
  • pale skin that burns easily
  • a large number of moles or freckles
  • taking medicine that suppresses your immune system
  • a co-existing medical condition that suppresses your immune system

For further guidance and support, visit the NHS website.

When should I go to the GP?

The NHS advised that you should consult a GP if you have any skin abnormality, such as a lump, ulcer, lesion or skin discolouration that has not healed after 4 weeks.

The health service has noted that although "it's unlikely to be skin cancer, it's best to get it checked".