With over 13,000 cases diagnosed annually, skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in Ireland. This is twice the number compared to 10 years ago and is projected to more than double again by 2045. Yet most skin cancers could be prevented by protecting skin.
The National Skin Cancer Prevention Plan aims increase awareness and adoption of skin cancer prevention behaviours.
Those who pursue outdoor sport and leisure are a high risk group for the development of skin cancer, as they spend long periods of time outdoors. Both occasional and often sun exposure can be harmful. Exposure causing sunburn is the most damaging, but frequent non burning exposures also significantly increase the risk of skin cancer. This risk can be reduced by following the SunSmart steps to protect the skin.
The Healthy Ireland SunSmart programme and the Irish Cancer Prevention Network are engaging with sports bodies and organisations to raise awareness of the risks of skin cancer and the simple SunSmart behaviours that can protect your skin.