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The Regional Municipality of Durham printPrinter Friendly Version



News Release

Be safe in the sun this National Sun Awareness Week

WHITBY, ON May 31, 2016 - Durham Region Health Department will mark National Sun Awareness Week, June 6 to 12, by reminding residents to be sun safe this summer. Overexposure to the sun increases the risk for sunburn, eye damage and skin cancer.            

"Exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet radiation (UV) without protection can damage the skin and increase the risk of melanoma," explained Brian Dallaway, public health nurse with the Health Department. "People with lighter hair may have skin that is more susceptible to damage by the sun. The more easily skin burns, the greater the risk for skin damage."

According to the Canadian Dermatology Association, skin cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in Canada, accounting for nearly one third of all newly diagnosed cancers. "Any change in the colour of the skin, is an indication the skin has been damaged," added Mr. Dallaway.

The Health Department recommends practising these sun safety tips to lower your risk of overexposure when enjoying outdoor activities this summer and all year round:

  • Seek shade when the sun’s rays are strongest, between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.
  • Apply sunscreen and lip balm with an SPF of 30 or higher before outdoor activities, focusing on high risk areas such as the nose, ears, neck and shoulders.
  • Apply sunscreen 20 minutes before outdoor activities; reapply at least every two hours and more often following water activity.
  • Wear clothing such as a long-sleeved shirt, sunglasses, pants and a wide-brimmed hat.
  • Avoid the use of tanning equipment.
  • Check the UV Index reading daily before going outdoors.

For additional tips on sun safety, visit durham.ca/sunsafety, or call Durham Health Connection Line at 905-666-6241 or 1-800-841-2729.

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Media inquiries:

The Regional Municipality of Durham:
Glendene Collins - Health Department, 905-668-7711 ext. 2999 or glendene.collins@durham.ca

If this information is required in an accessible format, please contact the Accessibility Co-ordinator at 1-800-372-1102 extension 2009.

For more information, please contact Health Department.