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Sunburn in winter

With the colder months upon us, you may be thinking of packing away the sunscreen and sunglasses, but hold off!

Although cases of sunburn may be more common in summer as that's when we are more likely to be in direct sunlight with minimal clothing, sunburn in winter is still a thing. Yes, you read that right, you can still get sunburnt in winter.

So, we encourage you to practice sun safety in winter. Wear sunscreen on your face, and anywhere that is exposed, wear sunglasses and a hat if you can as UV radiation is the leading contributor to developing skin cancer.

There is a common misconception that you have to have had multiple severe sunburns in the form of blistering and peeling in order to develop skin cancer.

Unfortunately, according to Cancer Research UK, getting sunburnt "just once every 2 years can triple your risk of melanoma skin cancer."

What is considered sunburn

Sunburn in the snow | sunburn in winter
When visiting a snowy region, remember to put on sunscreen to avoid sunburn.

You may be wondering what is considered sunburn as there are varying degrees. Well, even if you have only gone slightly pink or red, or if your skin is feeling itchy or irritated after being in the sun, that is sunburn.

Given how harsh the sun is here in Australia, many people experience sunburn not only during the hotter months but in, the colder months too. Sunburn in winter is especially common if you are at the snow. So if you are planning on snowboarding, skiing or even just a day building snowmen, make sure you take the proper precautions to avoid sunburn.

Get a mole check for skin cancer

Winter is a great time to get a mole check, particularly if you have had any bad cases of sunburn over summer. However, as stated above, you don't necessarily have had to have experienced severe sunburn to develop skin cancer.

Skin cancer is easily treated if it's detected in its early stages. Here at The Clinic, we offer total-body mole mapping, a mole check that scans the entirety of your skin surface (including the palms of your hands and soles of your feet) for the presence of skin cancer.

Now that you've read this article, hopefully you can avoid sunburn in winter. Though, if you'd like to know more or to book a mole-check appointment with our Skin Cancer Clinic, please call us on 03 9741 1200 or book online.


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