Page 16 - HOT NEWS MAY 2014
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for the best protection. Don't forget to protect your eyes. Wear good quality, wrap around sunglasses.
Sunscreens can be useful for protecting our skin from the sun's rays. But they will not protect us completely from sun damage on their own. Use sunscreens together with shade or clothing to avoid getting sunburn.
What to buy
The sun protection factor tells you the amount of protection the sunscreen gives against UVB radiation. It is the level of protection they give you against the sun that matters more than the price. National guidelines recommend you use at least factor 15.
Choose a sunscreen that has good protection against UVA rays as well as a high SPF. This is because both UVB and UVA rays can cause skin cancer.
Using sunscreen
Don't assume that because you have put on sunscreen, you can stay out without burning. No sunscreen, no matter how high the factor, can provide 100% protection. And no sunscreen, whether it's 15 or 50, will provide the protection it claims unless it is applied properly. Therefore it is very important that you put on sunscreen generously and regularly.
Research has shown that people apply much less sunscreen than they need to. Do check the use by date. Most sunscreens have a shelf life of 2 to 3 years, and will last about 12 to 18 months after opening. So it is usually fine to use last year's, but not a bottle from 5 years ago!
To get the level of protection stated on the bottle, you need to put enough on. For an average sized adult, you will need about two teaspoonfuls for your head, neck and arms, or two tablespoons if you are wearing a swimsuit.
If you are outdoors in strong sun, you also need to apply sunscreen regularly. Sunscreen is easily rubbed, washed or sweated off, so also reapply after showering, changing clothes or swimming - even if your sunscreen says it is waterproof.
Checking for skin cancers
It is important that you make a habit of checking your own skin for any changes. This is especially important if you are at a high risk of getting skin cancer or have had treatment for a previous skin cancer. If you find any changes in your skin that happen over a few weeks or months you should get your GP to look at them.
Look at Cancer Research UK webpage on symptoms and risk
factors to know what to look out for. Visit:
Sun AwAreneSS week
MAy 5 to MAy 15
Sun Awareness Week will be taking place from May 5 to May 15. It is time to get out your shades and your sun tan lotion for a summer of safe fun in the sun.
At the Sun Awareness Week website, you can find out exactly how to check for changes in your skin and what to do as soon as you spot them. You can also order a sun awareness pack or view information online to learn more about the dangers of getting skin cancer from the sun.
SunSmart Advice
Sunburn can be painful. It is also a clear sign that your skin has been damaged by too much ultraviolet (UV) radiation. Over time this damage can build up and lead to skin cancer.
It is important to avoid getting burned and to protect your skin when the sun is at its most intense. Remember to:
• Spend time in the shade between 11am and 3pm
• Wear a T-shirt, hat and sunglasses
• Use sunscreen with at least SPF (sun protection factor)
15 (the higher the better), with good UVA protection (the more stars the better).
Sunbeds are not a safe alternative to tanning outdoors. The intensity of some of the UV rays they give off can be 10 to 15 times higher than that of the midday sun.
People most at risk of developing skin cancer include those who have
• Fair skin
• Lots of moles or freckle
• Red or fair hair
• Had skin cancer before
• A family history of skin cancer
Cancer Research UK's SunSmart website has lots of information about protecting you and your children in the UK and abroad.
Spend time in the shade
One of the best ways to protect your skin from the sun's UV rays is to spend some time in the shade when the sun is strong. It's important to be especially careful about protecting your skin from sunburn when the sun is strongest. Trees, umbrellas, canopies or buildings can all provide shade and help you protect your skin.
Cover up in the sun
If there's no shade, the best way to protect your skin is with clothing. At least wear a T-shirt, hat and sunglasses. Remember that the sun will reflect from the surface of water. So you can still burn if you are in or near water.
The amount of protection you get from your clothes varies depending on the type of material. Wear a hat with a wide brim

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