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Don’t let skin cancer get under your skin!

1. It only takes fifteen minutes of sun exposure to cause sunburn, leading to permanent, irreversible, damage to your skin, even after such a short time…

This damage increases every time you go out into the sun and, may, eventually lead to skin cancer which is why CANSA urges everyone to be SunSmart, and serious about protecting their skin, in a bid to lower their risk of skin cancer.

2. Skin cancer is the most common cancer worldwide…

South Africa has one of the highest monitored ultraviolet (UV) levels in the world, it also has one of the highest incidences of skin cancer globally.

3. Damage from both UVA and UVB rays can lead to skin cancer…

Ultraviolet rays (UVA and UVB) reach the earth’s surface and are damaging to skin. UVB is responsible for producing sunburn and can cause sunburn within fifteen minutes, causing permanent damage, while UVA rays can contribute to ageing the skin and DNA damage.

4. People with blonde or red head hair with light skin, freckles and green or blue eyes are more at risk for sunburn and skin damage…

However everyone, regardless of their ethnic group, is at risk of getting skin cancer.

5. Using sunscreen is not the only one way in which to protect yourself in the sun…

Avoid direct sunlight between 10am and 4pm when the sun’s rays are most dangerous. Stay in the shade or under an (UV protective) umbrella as much as possible and UV protective clothing is also recommended.

6. You can get sunburnt in the shade or when it is overcast…

UV rays reflect off cement, water, sand, glass and grass and can therefore cause sunburn in the shade and throughout the year, not just in summer.

7. There is no such thing as a healthy tan…

Sunbeds, sunlamps and sunless / self-tanning products are also harmful and can lead to damage which may cause skin cancer.

How CANSA Helps

In January 2022, we hosting free FotoFinder and skin examinations, sponsored by Novartis, in the following areas: Springbok – 21 and 22 January, Rustenburg – 27 January and Nelspruit – 27 January. Appointments can be booked through CANSA Care Centres or directly with CANSA Service Coordinators in the various regions.

CANSA offers FotoFinder skin screenings at most CANSA Care Centres around South Africa. FotoFinder screening is an all-in-one skin cancer screening and mole mapping using a dermascope device, the imaging system of choice by thousands of dermatologists worldwide. The system automatically links digital dermoscopic images of moles to an overview image, making the identification and tracking of lesions easy.  Should any abnormalities be picked up, a referral will be made to a dermatologist.

As the FotoFinders are shared among the CANSA Care Centres, skin screenings are by appointment only and if not sponsored, a small fee is charged to help cover the cost of consumables used during the examination


Mzukona Mantshontsho is the founder of Nyakaza Media Solutions. Nyakaza Media Solutions is an organisation that was established to help community organisations, business entities, and schools to research, write, document, report, analyse, edit, publish newsletters or bulletins in hard-copy, on-line and maintain websites with the relevant content as per the editorial policy of that organisation, school or entity. Nyakaza Media Solutions has a vision to promote and bring dialogue to communities, businesses and schools about issues that affect them. Nyakaza Media Solutions is on a mission to develop and encourage communities, businesses and learners to celebrate the good, applaud excellence, welcome growth, strive to be better individuals, businesses and communities, want more knowledge, discourage bad and counter-productive behaviour as well as communities, businesses and learners that want to be great SOUTH AFRICANS. Nyakaza Media Solutions is making use of Yo School Magazine as a platform that learners in all schools to make use of to write their stories.

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