Presenters from the Melanoma Institute Australia, the largest research and treatment centre for Melanoma in the world, visited school name last week to present a sun safety awareness presentation to students in list grades.
Melanoma affects 1 in 14 men and 1 in 24 women and every 6 hours one person dies from melanoma. Though research, treatment is getting more and more advanced and many people who are able to get an early diagnosis are healed. It is a serious health threat and Australian and New Zealand people are at the highest risk of anywhere in the world.
The presentation highlighted to students that this type of cancer it is over 90 % preventable and that their skin is currently healthy and undamaged. The 5 Sun Smart rules shown below were discussed as steps that everyone can take to maximise their safety. The talk also explained what to look for, changes on their and loved ones skin how to spot ones that change or evolve (like Pokemon).
[Image result for melanoma institute australia] If this information helps to get early detection for just one person the message is so very important.
If it encourages our young people to take care and prevent damage to their skin before it occurs then the talk was a wonderful success.
Thank you, parents and carers for your commitment to protecting your young people. Thank you for providing broad brimmed hats and sunscreen and supporting the students in learning how to look after themselves.
For more information please visit http://www.melanoma.org.au/ .
How do I protect my skin?
Overexposure to ultra violet (UV) light causes 95% of melanoma – pretty clear proof that prevention is the key to avoiding it. The best way to prevent melanoma is to protect your skin from the sun.
- Seek shade, especially in the hottest part of the day.
- Wear sun-protective clothing that covers your back, shoulders, arms and legs.
- Wear a broad-brimmed hat.
- Apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 50+ every 2 hours and after swimming or exercise.
- Wear wrap-around sunglasses.
How do I check myself for melanoma?
The first symptom of a melanoma is usually the appearance of a new spot, or a change in an existing freckle or mole. The change may be in size, shape or colour and is normally noticed over several weeks or months.
The ABCDE guidelines provide a useful way to monitor your skin and detect the early signs of melanoma. Please note that this is just a guide and melanoma may present with different characteristics. This is why regular skin checks from a professional are so important.
Please seek expert advice if you notice any of the following:
A is for ASYMMETRY:
One-half of a mole or birthmark does not match the other.
B is for BORDER irregularity:
The edges are irregular, ragged, notched, or blurred.
C is for COLOUR variation:
The colour is not the same all over, but may have differing shades of brown or black, sometimes with patches of red, white, or blue.
D is for DIAMETER:
The area is larger than 6 mm (about the size of a pencil eraser) or is growing larger.
E is for EVOLVING:
Changes in size, shape, colour, elevation, or another trait (such as itching, bleeding or crusting).(This last point is likely the strongest of all of the warning signs)