Get smart on sun dam­age

The Gazette (Derwent Valley) - - NEWS - with Stacey Al­dous

TWO in three Aus­tralians are di­ag­nosed with skin can­cer by the age of 70.

This week is Na­tional Skin Can­cer Ac­tion Week, where the Can­cer Coun­cil of Aus­tralia aims to re­mind all Aus­tralians of the risks of ex­po­sure to UV ra­di­a­tion, the need for sun pro­tec­tion and early skin can­cer de­tec­tion.

More than 2000 peo­ple in Aus­tralia die from skin can­cer each year, and the Can­cer Coun­cil es­ti­mates Aus­tralia spends more than $1 bil­lion a year treat­ing skin can­cer.

Most skin can­cers can be pre­vented by the use of good sun pro­tec­tion, yet too many Aus­tralians still like to sport a “healthy tan”.

But a tan is not a sign of good health or well­be­ing — rather, it is a sign that your skin has been dam­aged by ex­po­sure to UV ra­di­a­tion.

This ex­po­sure re­sults in pre­ma­ture age­ing, in­clud­ing sun spots, wrin­kles increased risk of skin can­cer.

The theme for this year’s ac­tion week and through­out sum­mer is to #OwnYourTone and em­brace your nat­u­ral skin tone, and avoid tan­ning.

When­ever the UV in­dex is three or above, use the five forms of sun pro­tec­tion:

SLIP on sun-pro­tec­tive cloth­ing.

SLOP on SPF30 (or higher) broad-spec­trum, wa­ter­re­sis­tant sun­screen.

SLAP on a broad-brimmed hat. SEEK shade. SLIDE on sun­glasses. A com­bi­na­tion of th­ese mea­sures and reg­u­larly check­ing your skin for any changes are the keys to re­duc­ing your skin can­cer risk.

For fur­ther in­for­ma­tion, go to www.can­cer.org.au/ pre­vent­ing-can­cer/sun­pro­tec­tion/cam­paigns-an­de­vents/na­tional-skin-can­cer­ac­tion-week.html

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