Tuesday, October 19


not of the fabric kind but of the skin kind. Today I went to visit my specialist to get my 6 monthly routine check up for skin cancer. I have a history of it in my family with my father having a Melanoma removed some time ago and quite suddenly because of the seriousness of the cancer. I have unfortunately (sorry Mum) inherited my mother's skin type so have lots of moles and as well as my family history, puts me at an increased risk of skin cancer. Today my check up was all clear which is always a relief but I cannot be complacent about skin cancer.

Did you know?

* Melanoma represents 10% of all cancers, with more than 10,300 cases diagnosed annually. The risk of being diagnosed by age 85 is 1 in 14 for men and 1 in 24 for women. In 2006, there were 1250 deaths from melanoma.
* The most common cancers in Australia (excluding non-melanoma skin cancer) are prostate, colorectal (bowel), breast, melanoma and lung cancer.
* Around 434,000 people are treated for one or more non-melanoma skin cancers, with 450 people dying each year.
* skin cancers account for 80% of all newly diagnosed cancers.
* two in three Australians will be diagnosed with skin cancer by the time they are 70.
* Australia has one of the highest incidences of skin cancer in the world, at nearly four times the rates in Canada, the US and the UK.

These are scary figures for me and for all of us who live in Australia. With summer approaching it is so important to be sun smart. With some preventative measures I hope that my girls don't have to go through what I am now and so they know how important it is to protect themselves when they are older. Here are some of the Cancer Councils ways to prevent skin cancer:

  1. Slip on some sun-protective clothing – that covers as much skin as possible
  2. Slop on broad spectrum, water resistant SPF30+ sunscreen. Put it on 20 minutes before you go outdoors and every two hours afterwards. Sunscreen should never be used to extend the time you spend in the sun.
  3. Slap on a hat – that protects your face, head, neck and ears
  4. Seek shade
  5. Slide on some sunglasses – make sure they meet Australian Standards

It's National Skin Cancer Action Week from the 21-27 November. Their campaign, 'Don't Be a Victim', was first released in November in 2009 to raise awareness of skin cancer and sun protection in preparation for the summer season. Here is the ad they used to launch their campaign.

There are several ways to help support and get involved in helping the Cancer Council with research. These include:

* Australia's Biggest Morning Tea
* Daffodil Day
* Girls Night In

These are just a few but to find more you can go here.

Please stay safe this summer and remember to always Slip, Slop, Slap!


  1. Thanks for an informative post and a timely reminder. I need a skin check up!

  2. Two in three Aussies will be diagnosed with skin cacer by the time their 70?? This is really scary!! I have fair skin and was out at a sport day yesterday for my daughter. It wasn't overly sunny but I came home with a pink face that heated up and started glowing hot last night - ouch! Skin cancer really needs to be something we think about ALL the time, not just over the summer months. Thanks for an informative post :)

  3. Such scary figures. I am really conscious of being sun safe and especially of making sure Grace's skin is protected. Good news to hear your check up was clear, I keep telling my husband he should get a check up as he spends a fair bit of time in the sun. I need to get a skin check too. Thanks for sharing these facts with us.


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