21 December 2017
With the UV expected to reach an extreme level of 12 on Christmas Day, Council SA is urging South Australians to be SunSmart when outdoors to avoid irreversible sun damage.
Cancer Council SA is warning that UV levels will be at skin damaging levels on Christmas Day from as early as 9.00am until close to 6.00pm.
With recent statistics showing that 194,000 South Australian adults are still getting burnt on an average summer weekend, the message is particularly important as South Australians gear up for festive outdoor activities.
Cancer Council SA Manager of Education and Information, Joanne Rayner, said that while getting caught up in festivities, it was important that people didn’t get caught out unprotected in the sun.
“Whether it be spending time outdoors in the morning or afternoon, people need to take the appropriate precautions to protect their skin,” Ms Rayner said.
“People often have so much happening on Christmas Day that we want to remind them not to be caught red-faced with a sunburn or skin damage and to protect their skin.
“Every time we expose our skin to UV rays, the damage adds up to increase our risk of skin cancer.
“Right now, we are seeing UV levels reach the ‘extreme’ level on a daily basis, so even when the weather is cooler, UV will remain high.
“It is the sun’s UV that causes the damage to our skin, not the temperature, so people need to be aware that even if it is cloudy or cool we still need to cover up.
“While we have been experiencing fluctuating temperatures in the weeks leading up to Christmas, the one constant has been our very high UV levels which have far exceeded the skin damaging level of 3 every day.”
Ms Rayner also encouraged parents to be good role models for SunSmart behaviour and to be vigilant in protecting themselves and their children from overexposure to UV.
“The weather will be warm and kids will be playing outside throughout the holidays, so parents should not be complacent with skin protection for the whole family.”
SunSmart’s free App can be downloaded from Cancer Council SA.
For more information about SunSmart principles visit sunsmart.org.au or email email@example.com
To minimise sun damage, protect your skin in 5 ways when UV is three or above:
- Slip on some sun protective clothing
- Slop on SPF 30, or higher, broad spectrum sunscreen
- Slap on a shady hat that protects the head, face, ears and neck
- Seek shade whenever possible
- Slide on some wraparound sunglasses