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Redlands Molescreening and Skin Cancer Centre

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Sun ProtectionMole Screen Sun Protection putting sunscreen on

Prevention of skin cancer means sun protection. This also applies to the damaging effects the sun can have on your eyes.

As Queensland has one of the highest rates of skin cancer in the world it is absolutely vital that all of us protect our skin. The UV readings are high all year round so sun protection needs to be part of our daily routine.

If we are having a day outdoors then we should wear appropriate clothing and put on a broad brimmed hat and of course have an effective sunscreen on all exposed skin which we reapply frequently.

Don't forget that we are all outdoors for some of the day; traveling to work, dropping children at school, hanging clothes on the line etc. and all these little bits of UV exposure add up and in the long term cause skin damage. All Queenslanders should be wearing sunscreen every day.

Don't forget that UV rays reflect off many things in our environment including glass, concrete, water etc. so wearing a hat alone is not sufficient. A hat does have other benefits besides protecting your skin in keeping us cool and stopping excessive fluid loss on a hot day.

Remember our children spend a lot of time in the sun each day when they go to school. Make sure they have good sun protection and plenty of sunscreen on before they go to school, every day!


Choosing a Sunscreen

The three most important factors in choosing a sunscreen are:

1.Choose a SPF 30+ sunscreen
What does SPF mean?
SPF (Sun protection factor) relates to the length of time that the sunscreen provides protection. Normal skin (SPF 1) will start to turn ‘pink' in 10 minutes of direct sunlight. The SPF factor of a sunscreen is a multiple of the bodies natural defence. i.e. SPF 30 = 30 X 10 minutes = 300 minutes of protection. It is important to remember that other factors such as swimming, sweating and rubbing can all diminish the effectiveness of a sunscreen.

2. Choose a broad spectrum sunscreen.
This means it protects from both UV-A and UV-B rays from the sun.

3. Choose a sunscreen with a 4 hour water resistance time.
This gives some protection from losing sun protection due to sweating or swimming.
Alcohol-based lotions or gels are available for oily or hairy skin or those who do not like creams. Special sticks are also available for using around noses, lips and eyes.