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Too hot to handle – 14 people treated as the heat takes its toll

The number of people diagnosed with skin cancer in Ireland is rising

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People are advised to use sunscreen. Photo: Stock image

People are advised to use sunscreen. Photo: Stock image

People are advised to use sunscreen. Photo: Stock image

The HSE has confirmed that 14 people were treated for heat related illnesses during the last hot spell of weather in July.

A spokesperson said that between July 15 and 18, while there was “no notable increase in the calls to the National Ambulance Service...14 calls were triaged with heat related symptoms”.

While temperatures are set to fall back to more normal levels following last week’s heatwave, the HSE’s National Cancer Control Programme and Healthy Ireland are still reminding everyone of the importance of being “SunSmart”. Both groups said people must protect their skin from the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays to help reduce the risk of skin cancer.

Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer in Ireland with almost 13,000 cases diagnosed each year.

The number of people being diagnosed with skin cancer in Ireland is rising rapidly, with the number of cases expected to double by 2045.

The higher the UV index, the higher the risk of skin and eye damage.

When the UV index is 3 or above, people should protect skin and eyes by following the Healthy Ireland “SunSmart five S’s” which are: “Slip on clothing that covers your skin such as long sleeves, collared t-shirts.

“Slop on sunscreen on sun-exposed areas using SPF minimum 30+ for adults and 50+ for children which has high UVA protection and is water-resistant. Re-apply regularly. Sunscreen cannot provide 100pc protection, it should be used alongside other protective measures such as clothing and shade

“Slap on a wide-brimmed hat.

“Seek shade such as sitting in the cover of trees to avoid direct sunlight, especially between 11am and 3pm.

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“Use a sunshade on your buggy or pram. Keep babies and children out of direct sunlight.

“Slide on sunglasses with UV protection to protect your eyes.”

The HSE and Healthy Ireland area urging people to never “deliberately try to get a suntan”, avoid getting sunburned and to never use a sunbed.

Dr Katharine Harkin, Specialist in Public Health Medicine, urged people to make SunSmart part of their daily routine.


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