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86% of skin cancer* cases are associated with lifestyle and other risk factors 1
Dr Daniel Glass, Consultant Dermatologist at BMI The Clementine Churchill Hospital in London offers 5 top tips on how to stay safe in the sun this summer:
Use your sunscreen liberally and at regular intervals, making sure to cover all areas of exposed skin, including the back of the neck, top of the ears and the scalp. Get help from someone else for the hard-to-reach areas like your back and shoulders. A sunscreen with a high SPF (sun protection factor) will help prevent the skin from burning and the damage that can cause skin cancer.
Wear more clothes
This may seem like an odd tip to advise during the summer, but wearing a hat, sunglasses, and putting on a t-shirt or kaftan to cover your shoulders and chest on the beach will give you more protection from the sun, without making you too hot.
Sit in the shade
Where possible enjoy the sun in the shade rather than sitting or walking directly in it. Take a large parasol to the beach and sit underneath this, especially at times when the sun is highest in the sky, so between 11am till 3pm.
Home & Away
Remember that the sun does come out in the UK as well; take sunscreen to work with you and apply before sitting outside on your lunch break.
Monitor your moles
It is essential to regularly monitor your moles. If any change in colour, size, shape, bleed or become sensitive to touch, then seek a review by your GP or Dermatologist.
Sunbeds increase your risk of skin cancer
There is a large body of evidence to suggest that using sunbeds increases your risk of skin cancer. According to a research that collected evidence from 27 studies, sunbed users have up to 20% increased risk of melanoma - one of the most aggressive forms of skin cancer.
Using sunbeds when you are young can be particularly damaging so young adults need to take into consideration that the choice to go on a sunbed will have long term effects. Use of sunbeds by the young is thought to partially account for the increased numbers of skin cancers observed in young patients.
There is a move in the USA to classify sunbeds as a carcinogen, just like cigarettes. The risk of melanoma associated with 10 or more indoor tanning sessions was nearly 600% higher among young patients."
Dr Daniel Glass, Consultant Dermatologist
BMI The Clementine Churchill Hospital, London
Getting a fast diagnosis
We provide fast access to skin cancer Consultant-led investigation and treatment.
An appointment with the Consultant Dermatologist of your choice is usually available within 48 hours so you can get the fast investigation you need and put your mind at rest.
Ask your GP for a referral, use your private medical insurance or pay for yourself with flexible finance options.
For more information on our skin cancer services please call us on 0800 157 7747
or make an online enquiry.
* Malignant melanoma skin cancer