Skin Cancer is one of the most common types of cancer in Australia but is also the most preventable
There are a number of ways you can protect yourself from harmful UV rays. When properly applied they can greatly reduce your risk of developing skin cancer.
The following strategies can be implemented to reduce the risk of acquiring skin damage or developing at risk skin cancers;
Reduce Sun Exposure
When outside, stay in the shade of trees or buildings or move jobs or recreational activities to shaded areas whenever possible.
Reschedule Work or Outdoor Activities
Heat and Ultraviolet Radiation is more intense between 10am and 3pm. If possible, schedule outdoor tasks before 10am and after 3pm.
Rotate Employees at Work
If possible, alternate employees between both indoor and outdoor tasks.
Sunscreen has the ability to filter out most UV Radiation, which significantly reduces skin damage.
However, it cannot filter out 100% of UV Radiation which is why minimum sun exposure is necessary when possible. UV may pass through at varying rates indicated by the SPF number.
The SPF number is a guide to how much protection a sunscreen provides.
The simple act of moisturising skin nightly and using a good sunscreen daily has effectively reduced Solar Keratosis by 70%!
You can find out more about sunscreen by clicking here.
Wear Protective Clothing
The clothing that you wear in at risk areas to UVR exposure should cover the skin as much as possible.
Spotscreen recommend the following:
- Shirts with long sleeves and collars
- Long trousers, long shorts or skirts below the knee
- Thick, closely woven fabric (cotton)
- Clothes should suit the task, allow good ventilation and be comfortable
- Cover your arms and hands when possible with sleeves and gloves whilst driving
- Look for clothing with an Ultraviolet Radiation Factor (UPF) rated above UPF 30
SOLBARI® are a high quality Australian brand that specialises in stylish UPF50+ sun protective clothing, swimwear and hats. All products are tested and awarded the highest achievable sun protective rating by the Australian Government.
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Wear Sunglasses and Headwear
Spotscreen recommend choosing close-fitting, wrap-around sunglasses which meet the Australian Standard Act 1067. Tinted safety glasses (AS 1337) protect against UVR and industrial hazards. Sunglasses and a hat worn together can significantly reduce eye exposure when working around reflective surfaces.
For headwear, choose a comfortable and well fitted hat with a full crown made of woven material. A broad-rim hat is highly recommended or legionnaire style hats with the flap at the back. These hats are great as they cover the back of the neck and sides of the face.
It has also been publicly highlighted that every workplace should have an adequate Sun Protection Policy. Workplace skin cancer screenings can also provide an excellent way to encourage sun safety and promote early detection of skin cancer.