Farmers, protect yourselves from sun

NEW data from a Cancer Council Victoria survey shows more than a third of Victorians do not know the correct indicator of sunburn risk – putting themselves and their families at risk of sun damage and ultimately skin cancer.
Farmers are particularly at risk, given their profession entails outdoor work and often for long hours at a time.
The survey found 22 per cent of Victorian adults aged 18 to 39 incorrectly selected temperature as the most useful measure to calculate sunburn risk for the day.
Just 61 per cent were able to correctly identify the sun protection times or UV level as the best measure to determine sunburn risk.
SunSmart manager Heather Walker said it was important for people to think about UV – not heat – when it comes to making decisions about sun protection.
“UV radiation is the major cause of skin cancer, but the problem is none of our senses can actually detect it. It’s not like sunlight that we can see, or the sun’s heat, which we can feel. As a result, we usually don’t realise how strong the rays are until the damage has already been done,” she said.
“By incorrectly using temperature as a gauge, you are unwittingly leaving yourself exposed to increased skin cancer risk.”
A new app launched by SunSmart will use augmented reality to help address misconceptions about the cause of sunburn and encourage users to protect their skin.
“Our new app – seeUV – uses augmented reality so that we can actually get a visual snapshot of our risk. It’s an exciting and innovative way to engage people in the SunSmart message and hopefully help increase people’s understanding of an otherwise invisible danger,” Ms Walker said.
The seeUV app also has a selfie mode, which uses augmented reality technology to generate the long-term consequences of UV damage on a person’s skin, such as premature ageing, wrinkling and sunspots.
“While a sunburn or tan fades, UV damage remains. With the seeUV app, we’re asking users to think about how that damage might present in five, 10 or 20 years down the track. Unfortunately the more UV damage you have, the greater your risk of skin cancer,” Ms Walker said.
The latest statistics from the Victorian Cancer Registry show 2712 Victorians were diagnosed with melanoma – the deadliest form of skin cancer – in a single year. In the same year, 379 people lost their life to melanoma, while 137 people died of other skin cancers.
seeUV is available as a free download on Google Play and is coming soon to the App Store.

Taking precaution: farmers and their families are urged to take adequate precaution, such as wearing hats and sunscreen, to reduce their risk of sunburn and skin cancer this summer. Source: Facebook.

Short URL: http://thestar.com.au/?p=23878

Posted by on Jan 23 2018. Filed under Rural News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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