Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Timely Warning for Aussie Fishers

Too much ultraviolet (UV) radiation can cause sunburn, premature ageing, eye damage and skin damage leading to skin cancer.  Australia has one of the highest rates of skin cancer in the world.  At least two in every three Australians will develop skin cancer before the age of 70.  When fishing without appropriate sun protection you can be exposed to a double dose of UV radiation, both directly from the sun and reflected of sand and water, further increasing your risk of skin cancer.  

Prevention is better than cure Skin cancer is one of the most preventable cancers.  SunSmart Manager, Sue Heward, said: “If you’re planning a fishing trip, try to reduce your UV exposure by placing yourself undercover or going early in the morning or late in the afternoon. Make sure to wear protective clothing, such as long sleeved, collared shirts, broad brimmed hats, sunglasses and regularly apply SPF 30+ sunscreen on the remaining skin that is still exposed.”

Top tips for fishing enthusiasts:Check the UV level for your area daily on, the weather section of your daily paper or on your smartphone (available on the free SunSmart app). During the sun protection times, remember to:

1.      Slip on sun protective clothing that covers as much of your skin as possible.
2.      Slop on 30+ broad spectrum sunscreen and reapply every two hours. Don't use sunscreen to extend your time in the sun.
3.      Slap on a wide brimmed hat that provides good protection for your face and neck.
4.      Seek shade under a tree especially during the middle of the day when UV levels are most intense.
5.      Slide on sunglasses. Make sure they meet Australian Standards.

Sunscreen safety tips It’s important to remember that sunscreen is just one way you can protect yourself from the harmful effects of the sun. Research shows most Australians don't apply enough sunscreen, sometimes halving the level of sun protection stated on the label. Always apply generously to clean, dry skin 20 minutes before going out into the sun and re-apply every 2 hours, or more often after sweating or toweling dry.

The average-sized adult should apply more than half a teaspoon of sunscreen to each arm and the face/neck (including ears), and just over one teaspoon to each leg, the front of the body and the back of the body. Keep a 30+ broad spectrum, water resistant sunscreen pump pack in the car so it is easily accessible.

Find out how much sunscreen you should apply by using the sunscreen calculator on the SunSmart app.  The calculator provides customised feedback on the amount of sunscreen you need per application, based on your size and clothing cover.

For best protection, use sunscreen to cover the skin that is not already covered by your protective clothing, hat and sunnies, and stay in the shade wherever possible.
Early detectionUnlike many other forms of cancer, skin cancer is often visible – making it easier to detect in the early stages. Early detection is crucial if skin cancer is to be cured. 

Ms Heward, said; "It is important to look for early signs of skin cancer. Check your skin regularly using a hand-held mirror to check the skin on your back and the back of your neck – or ask someone else to have a look for you. If you notice any changes in your skin or you are concerned, see their doctor.”
All Australians should get to know their skin and check it regularly. For men over 40 years of age and those who spend a lot of time outdoors this should be at least with each change of season. Check all of your skin, not just sun-exposed areas. See your doctor if you notice:
  • a new spot, lump or unusual freckle
  • a mole, sunspot or sore that does not heal
  • a spot that looks different from other spots around it
  • a spot that has changed colour, size or shape over a few weeks or months
  • a spot that has an irregular border or becomes itchy or bleeds.
SunSmart offers a range of information and resources to help you enjoy the sun safely. For more information visit the SunSmart website or call (03) 9635 5148.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for the post helping raise awareness of skin cancer prevention.

    You and your readers might also like to know about our updated SunSmart App (with Sunscreen Calculator) Download from here -

    Finally we currently have a Donate a Tweet campaign running which might interest you and your readers - It's one small way to help raise awareness of skin cancer and sun protection this summer.

    Thanks again,

    Cancer Council Vic