My name is Joy-Marie Richards.
I am age 65 years old and from New Zealand. I am of fair skin and I have not been diagnosed with skin cancer or Melanoma, fortunately. However, I regularly have skin checks with a skin specialist and occasionally have changing moles removed which are basil cells and damaged skin sprayed with nitrogen.
Sun protection is absolutely necessary these days. As the damage is evident from years and years of lying in the sun covered in baby oil trying to get a sun tan. All I got was blisters and freckles and a lot of skin damage.
I played golf with only a visor for head protection, so the top of my scalp would peel plus my ears. We would go out in the boat and I would have the front of my legs burnt so badly I couldn't get out of bed the next day.
It doesn't matter these days what colour your skin is or what shape you are. We are all different both young and old. We all need some sun exposure. When the skin is exposed to the sun our bodies make Vitamin D which helps our bodies absorb calcium for stronger healthier bones. Too much unprotected exposure to the sun's ultraviolet (UV) rays can cause skin damage, eye damage and skin cancer.
Skin damage adds up over a lifetime of work and covering up can reduce the risk of getting skin cancer. But skin cancer deaths are rising especially in those who work outdoors. It is crucial to cover up from the sun - not just yourself but also your family. Driving for extended periods in the sun can affect your skin through the windows.
Thank you Joy-Marie for helping raise awareness for skin cancer, melanoma and skin conditions, and sharing your story with us and our Solbari Community.
The Solbari Team
Over the coming weeks, we will be publishing some stories from the Solbari Community to help raise awareness about skin cancer, melanoma and sun protection.
If you are interested in sharing your story, please answer the following questions from the relevant questionnaire and send us a picture of yourself being sun safe in the outdoors.
I grew up thinking pale was beautiful till I started university in the mid 70s. Then I took a U turn and decided a tanned look would make me look more attractive. I went all out achieving a tanned look, lying out in the sun during the summer holidays, after my summer job hours and all weekends. That went on for many years.