How To Stay Safe In The Sun

Your risk of skin cancer can drastically increase if you become sunburnt. It is a common misconception that you can not burn when it is cloudy or a seemly dull day – you can and you should always be prepared! There is no healthy or safe way to achieve a tan, you are always best to use a self-tanner to achieve that bronzed glow.  This being said, it is important to strike a balance between getting sufficient sun protection, and receiving adequate vitamin D from sunlight.

It’s important to protect your skin from the recently arrived summer sun and keep an eye out for any changes, especially when it comes to moles. Here is some guidance on how to stay safe this summer, and what to do if you notice any changes in your skin.  

Use sun protection 

Sun protection is much more than just putting sun cream on before heading out the door. Make sure that you reapply every 2-3 hours, and keep out of the sun during peak hours. Always wear a hat and sunglasses to protect your eyes and head, and make sure that you are hydrated. 

Changes within moles to look out for

Transform advises to always try to follow the ABCDE rule to spot the beginning stages of melanoma.

Asymmetry – Melanoma frequently has an irregular, asymmetrical shape. Moles that are not malignant are often symmetrical and consistent in shape, so if you notice a mole that is not symmetrical it is always best to get this checked out. 

Border: Non-cancerous moles often have smooth, well-defined borders, but melanoma frequently has borders that are ill-defined or irregular in shape. If you feel as though your boarders have run or are not clearly defined, this could be a cause for concern.

Colour: Melanoma lesions may have several hues or shades of various different colours, from brown, purple and red. Usually, benign moles are one colour so keep an eye out for your moles changing colour. 

Diameter – Melanoma growths typically exceed 6 mm in diameter, or the size of a common pencil. Any growth or large mole should always be checked out, and it is good to get a second opinion if you are still concerned. 

Evolution: Melanoma frequently changes its appearance, including its size, shape, and colour. Melanoma frequently evolves over time, unlike the majority of benign moles – always get something checked out if it is different or new.