Summer: Health Awareness: Sunburn

What: Sunburn is a unique response by the skin to the damage caused by the harmful ultraviolet rays of the sun (or sunbeds).

Why: Over exposing yourself to the sun and getting sunburned increases the risk of acquiring various skin conditions such as prickly heat, “aged skin”, solar keratosis and skin cancer.

The two most common types of non-melanoma skin cancer are basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma The less common but aggressive form of skin cancer is known as melanoma. This particular skin cancer is serious as it has the ability to spread to other parts of the body. It may develop from an existing mole or appear on normal looking skin.

Who – Melanoma affects all ages but the young and people with pale, sensitive skins are particularly at risk. The success of treatment depends on identifying this condition in its early stages.

Preventing sunburn and avoiding the harmful rays of the sun are the safest options. For example, spending more time in the shade between the hours of 11am and 3pm,wearing a hat and light clothing, applying 15+ factor sunscreen. Children particularly, require extra attention.

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