Royal Surrey County Hospital is encouraging people to be sun smart as part of Sun Awareness Week.

In preparation for the summer months, the Trust recommends:

  • Spend time in the shade from 11am to 3pm from March to October
  • Cover up with suitable clothing (ideally UV protective) including hats and sunglasses
  • Use “high protection” sunscreen of at least SPF30, with both UVA and UVB protection. Ensure you apply it generously and regularly
  • Make sure you never burn
  • Keep babies and young children out of direct sunlight
  • Remember –you need the combination of all of the above to get maximum protection from the sun

Farrokh Pakzad, Consultant Melanoma Surgeon, said: “There are risks associated with getting sunburnt at any age, but for children there is a heightened danger of developing skin cancer in later life as the amount ultraviolet (UV) exposure accumulates.

“We cannot feel the sun’s UV rays damaging our skin and some people wrongly think you have to be on holiday for this to happen. But, it is possible to burn on a dull and cloudy day walking to the shops in the UK. The sun’s UV rays are able to penetrate deep into the skin and can damage our skin cells”.

“While some sun exposure is good for general wellbeing, chronic over exposure to UV rays can lead to premature aging of the skin, permanent damage, and in the worst case skin cancer such as melanoma.

“It is important to remember that not one single agent protects us completely from the sun.

“If you notice a mole that is changing, tell your doctor. You can be referred in to see a dermatologist or the specialist skin cancer team for an assessment.”

©2019 Royal Surrey County Hospital

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