We all know that when we pop down for a swim at the Strand, or have a walk up Castle Hill, sunscreen is essential. Townsville’s UV rate is among the highest in the world, so taking a proactive response is essential. 95% of skin cancer cases are caused by incidental sun exposure. While most people remember sunscreen when heading outdoors for a particular activity, incidental sun exposure is often forgotten about. Think driving, sitting next to a window, or ducking out to grab lunch at work. It’s important to remember that all sun exposure has the potential to be harmful.

Although the situation might seem a little dire, there are plenty of ways you can keep yourself and your family protected. As we head into summer, we can expect a UV rating of EXTREME (11+) every day. Between 8am and 4pm is when we need to be most vigilant. Melanoma is one of the most prevalent deadly skin cancers in North Queensland. The risk of developing a melanoma is decreased by 50% when you apply sunscreen daily!*  

It’s important to note that melanoma isn’t just a threat for over 45s. Melanoma rates among adolescents in Australia is the highest in the world! Taking a proactive approach at ANY age is key! 

Daily sunscreen application is truly the holy grail (and bonus! as well as preventing skin cancers, daily sunscreen application can reduce the effects of ageing). Sunscreen comes in many different types to suit all skin types from oily, to dry, to sensitive and combination. Sunscreen is no longer thick, greasy and overpowering! But if you’re only just hopping on the daily sunscreen application train, don’t fret! It’s far better to start late than never. Add sunscreen application into your morning routine, and book yourself in for a skin check 

Dr Helena recently had a chat with Queensland Country Health Fund to discuss more about protecting our skin in our beautiful Sunshine State. Read at https://www.queenslandcountry.health/members/news/2020/save-your-own-skin/

*Skin Cancer Foundation 2020, All About Sunscreen