Thursday, May 11, 2023
Mackay and Whitsunday Life
Within Australia, skin cancer is the most prevalent form of cancer, with over 750,000 new diagnoses made every year, making up about 80 per cent of cancers diagnosed in Australia.
While most skin cancers are curable if detected early, the disease can be deadly if left untreated. Therefore, it's crucial to know the signs of skin cancer and ways to prevent it.
Signs of skin cancer to look out for include:
1. Changes in the colour, size, or shape of a mole or other skin spot
2. Scaly or rough patches of skin
3. Redness or swelling beyond the border of a mole or other spot
4. Itching, bleeding, or oozing from a mole or other spot
Preventing skin cancer is essential, and there are several ways to do so:
1. Wear sunscreen: Apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 to all exposed skin, including your lips, every day.
2. Seek shade: Stay out of the sun, especially during the peak hours of 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
3. Cover up: Wear protective clothing, such as long-sleeved shirts, hats, and sunglasses.
4. Avoid tanning beds: Indoor tanning can increase your risk of skin cancer.
5. Perform self-exams: Check your skin regularly for any changes and report any suspicious moles or skin spots to your doctor.
6. Get regular check-ups: Have your skin checked by a dermatologist at least once a year, especially if you have a history of skin cancer or other risk factors.
In particular, the highest rates of skin cancer are found in Queensland, due to the high UV levels. By practising sun safety, you can prevent cancer and other associated health issues.