Locals urged to stay sun smart

BROKEN HILL residents are reminded to practice sensible safety behaviours while out in the sun.

In the lead up to Summer, experts encourage community members to cover all bases to prevent overexposure that can carry deadly consequences.

The Cancer Council continues to promote the well-known Slip, Slop, Slap motto, with two extra additions Seek and Slide now also a must-do.

Community programs coordinator for Western NSW, Fiona Markwick, said each aspect will provide greater protection when outdoors.

“I think a lot of people tend to rely on sunscreen,” she said. “To maximise protection, rely on the five S’s.”

Sun smart items that include a hat, long sleeve clothing, sunscreen (SPF30), sunglasses and any form of shade are all recommended.

Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) forecasted temperatures of above 20 each day for the current week in Broken Hill.

The BOM’s readings also predicted the UV (Ultraviolet) Index to reach 12 (Extreme) for four consecutive days starting Monday.

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Mrs Markwick said the potential of sunburn and its implications are increased if proper prevention methods are not employed.

“The risk of getting sunburnt is quick, it only takes five to ten minutes,” she said.

“The more exposure you have, the more likely you are to get skin cancer.”

According to the Cancer Council, 95 percent of skin cancers are caused by UV radiation.

A regular check of skin has been identified as the best form of early detection.

Mrs Markwick suggests examining the entire body and use a mirror for areas that are hard to see.

“It’s really knowing what they have on their body,” she said. “If it’s something new, better go see a doctor – don’t much around with it.”

The cancer charity reported that about two out of three Australians are diagnosed with skin cancer by the age of 70.

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Parents, sports coaches and other role models in the community are urged to set a good example for young people to follow.

“Try and model the good sun protection behaviours,” Mrs Markwick said. “It’s never too late to change the behaviours.”

Outdoor workers and men over the age of 40 are also encouraged to maintain an adequate sun safety routine.

For more information or to get help, visit www.cancercouncil.com.au.

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