National Skin Cancer Action Week November 18–24

It is important to be sunsmart this summer.

Summer’s nearly here!  And while the return of blue skies and warming rays are a welcome relief from the chills of winter, we all need to take care to make sure the sun remains our friend, not our enemy.

November 18 – 24 is National Skin Cancer Action Week, a timely reminder of the need for us to be sun-smart as we head into our long, hot Australian summer. 

With two in three Australians diagnosed with skin cancer by age 70, the action week is an important reminder of the risks of exposure to UV radiation, the need for sun protection and the importance of early skin cancer detection for all Australians.

More than 2,000 people in Australia die from skin cancer each year, and Cancer Council Australia estimates we spend more than $1 billion per year treating skin cancer.

And despite all the statistics, we still hear people referring to a “heathy tan”.  A tan is not a sign of good health or wellbeing – in fact, tanning is a sign that you have been exposed to enough UV radiation to damage your skin.  This will eventually cause premature aging – including sun spots, wrinkles and sagging.  Worst of all, it increases your risk of skin cancer.

Throughout National Skin Cancer Action Week and summer, Cancer Council Australia and the Australasian College of Dermatologists encourages everyone to #OwnYourTone and embrace your natural skin colour.  All you have to do is protect yourself from UV radiation and abstain from tanning.

During National Skin Cancer Action Week and throughout summer, use the five forms of sun protection and #OwnYourTone by:

  • slip on sun-protective clothing
  • slop on SPF30 (or higher) broad-spectrum, water-resistant sunscreen
  • slap on a broad-brimmed hat
  • seek shade
  • slide on sunglasses.

A combination of these measures, along with getting to know your skin and regularly checking for any changes, are the keys to reducing your skin cancer risk.

 

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