- TRUTH Most skin cancers are the result of too much time in the
sun particularly during childhood BUT can be prevented by
protecting the skin from an early age.
- TRUTH It can take just 10-12 minutes in the sun for UV
radiation to begin to damage skin.
- TRUTH One severe sunburn incident doubles a child’s risk of
melanoma later in life.
- TRUTH effective
shade is the best way to reduce your risk of skin
- TRUTH Personal protection strategies are also very important
to protect against UV radiation.
- TRUTH UV radiation cannot be seen or felt – it is not related
- MYTH ‘A tan provides good protection against the sun’
Tanned skin is just
damaged skin and offers almost no protection against UV
radiation. Naturally dark skin provides some protection
because it takes longer to burn than fair skin.
- MYTH ‘It’s OK to be in the sun when it’s not hot’
We do not feel UV
radiation – when we feel hot, it is from infra-red
radiation, not UV radiation. In most locations,
radiation levels are still high in spring and autumn
even though temperatures can be low. UV radiation is
generally lower during winter, but reflection from the snow
can double your exposure, especially at high altitudes.
- MYTH ‘Taking regular breaks while sunbathing will prevent
radiation exposure is cumulative. Total exposure will build
up over the day no matter how many breaks you take.
- MYTH ‘You can’t get sunburnt on a cloudy day’
Up to 80% of solar UV
radiation gets through light cloud cover. Haze in the
atmosphere can even increase UV radiation exposure.
- MYTH ‘We need plenty of sunlight for good health’
In normal daily life, we
get more exposure to sunlight (and UV radiation) than is
healthy. In some circumstances, such as nursing homes,
people require deliberate exposure to low levels of UV
radiation to maintain Vitamin D levels but these are