Newspaper article Gympie Times, The Qld.

Gympie's Burning Truth

Newspaper article Gympie Times, The Qld.

Gympie's Burning Truth

Article excerpt

SCORCHING figures show Gympie locals are increasing their risk of skin cancer, with nearly 45% of adults getting sunburnt every year.

But compared to our neighbours and other parts of Queensland, we are not doing too bad (see factbox below).

More than 66% of Gympie region locals aged 18-34 get sunburnt each year, compared to 60% of those aged 35-54 and 22% of those aged over 55.

Within the Gympie local government region, about 1750 people have reported having a melanoma and 3000 have reported having some other form of skin cancer. The number of males who reported ever having had a non-melanoma skin cancer was 2.7 times higher than females.

Cancer Council Queensland spokesperson Katie Clift said sunburn caused significant, unrepairable damage to skin cells.

"Sunburn is linked to all skin cancers including melanoma - the most deadly form of the disease," Ms Clift said.

"What most Queenslanders don't realise is that sunburn can occur in as little as 15 minutes, even on cold and overcast days - you can still be sunburnt when the temperature is cool. …

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