Much more common than most people would think, but worryingly it is also increasing at an alarming rate. The warm, sunny weather enjoyed in the UK in 2018 could only add to this trend.
Only around 400 people a year used to die from melanoma skin cancer in the 1960s in the UK, that has increased to around 2,500 per year currently.
In 2018, it is estimated that more than 100,000 will be diagnosed with non-melanoma skin cancer and 13,000 with the most deadly form of skin cancer, melanoma. Around 2,500 will die from skin cancer in 2018 in the UK.
Less people in the UK are diagnosed with melanoma skin cancer than in Australia but a higher percentage of cases prove to be fatal. The survival rate in Australia for melanoma is around 90% versus 80% in the UK.
The lower survival rate has been attributed to a level of complacency in the UK, people don’t think about UV exposure and protecting themselves from the sun as much as they do in Australia. The earlier a melanoma is detected the better the survival rates.
The British Association of Dermatologists have commented that 40 percent of people never check themselves for skin cancers and 77 percent of people wouldn’t know how to recognise signs of skin cancer.
Whilst there is a level of concern about skin cancer in the UK: The Independent reported that 8 out of 10 Brits are worried about skin cancer, their everyday actions did not reflect that concern with 72 percent stating that they had been sun burnt in the last 12 months.
Many Brits are enjoying more overseas foreign holidays in sunny locations throughout the year. There is also still a tendency for people to use a sun bed or solarium in the UK, whereas the dangers of sun beds are well known and they have been largely banned for commercial purposes in Australia for some time. Both of these factors is contributing to the incidence rates and skin cancer fatalities.
Skin cancer is caused by cumulative exposure to the sun. Dermatologists recommend UPF50+ sun protective clothing and broad brim sun hats as the best measure to avoid sun burn and prevent skin cancers.
Solbari offers a range of UPF50+ clothing, sun hats and accessories all with the highest sun protective rating available in the World of UPF50+. All of Solbari’s products are independently tested and rated UPF50+ by the Australian Government.
It is very difficult to the untrained eye to identify melanomas and skin cancers because they can come in many different shapes and sizes.
As Associate Professor Rosemary Nixon from the Skin & Cancer Foundation Inc. says, "the earlier a skin cancer is identified and treated, the better the chance of avoiding surgery, or in the case of a serious melanoma or skin cancer, potential disfigurement or even death."