To speak to a specialist cancer nurse,
freefone the National Cancer Helpline
1800 200 700
Mon—Thurs 9am—7pm Fri 9am—5pm
The main cause of skin cancer is ultraviolet light (UV) radiation from sunlight. There are two types of UV light that reach the Earth: UVA and UVB. Both are harmful.
Skin cancer can take 20 to 30 years to develop. Some people are more at risk than others. You may develop skin cancer later in life, if you
Most skin cancers can be prevented by avoiding the sun when it's at its strongest and by paying attention to any early skin changes. Also, examine your skin regularly.
Avoid the sun between 11am and 3pm. During this time the sun's rays are strongest.
Wear protective clothing. Clothing should be dark and tightly woven and cover your arms and legs. Also wear a broad-brimmed hat and wraparound sunglasses.
Always wear sunscreen. Apply the cream 30 minutes before going out into the sun. Apply thickly and evenly every 2 hours no matter how high its protection. Make sure you're protected against both UVA and UVB rays. The sunscreen should have a SPF (sun protection factor) of 15 or higher. The bottle should have UVA marked on it.
Avoid tanning beds or sunbeds. See the SunSmart website for more information about protecting yourself in the sun.
Freephone 1800 200 700 to talk to a specialist cancer nurse
It's open Monday-Thursday from 9am to 7pm and Friday from 9am to 5pm