Children, Teenagers and Young People’s Mental Health Awareness – Care First Webinar 14th May 2021

There are times when we all feel the strain. As parents and carers, there are ways we can support children and young people to give them the best chance to stay mentally healthy. Parents and carers play an important role in teaching children and young people how to understand and manage their feelings as they grow up.

Research tells us that as many as three children in every primary school class has a mental health problem. This is an issue which is growing and remember, these are only the reported number of diagnosed cases, as not every child has a diagnosis and many struggle in silence for fear of being seen “differently” to their peers. At a young age, difference matters and so many struggle to conform to what they think is the norm, or the way they should be. If there is a problem within the home, or the young person is subjected to bullying, it is likely they will keep quiet and not reach out for support.

Of concern is that around 70% of children and young people who experience a mental health problem have not had appropriate interventions at a sufficiently early age. And this could be to do with being afraid to speak out, to express or understand their feelings and also not to appear “different” to those around them. Children’s mental health like adults should be given the same importance as their physical health.

In schools, children and young people are taught about a healthy lifestyle that includes; good nutrition, exercise, social contact etc. all vital to our physical wellbeing. It is equally as important for them to be taught also about “difference”, about speaking out, expressing their feelings and of course being kind – not just to others, but to themselves. Thankfully, this is now being recognised more widely within schools. There is however, stigma around mental health so it is useful to encourage youngsters to speak out, to be heard and to talk about their feelings.

Common issues which can impact a child or young person’s mental health:

  • Having a long-term physical illness
  • Having a parent who has had mental health problems, problems with alcohol or has been in trouble with the law
  • Experiencing the death of someone close to them
  • Having parents who separate or divorce
  • Having been severely bullied, or physically or sexually abused
  • Living in poverty or being homeless
  • Experiencing discrimination, perhaps because of their race, sexuality or religion
  • Acting as a carer for a relative, taking on adult responsibilities
  • Having long-standing educational difficulties.

Things that can help children and young people’s mental wellbeing include:

  • Being in good physical health, eating a balanced diet and getting regular exercise
  • Having time and the freedom to play, indoors and outdoors
  • Being part of a family that gets along well most of the time
  • Going to a school that looks after the wellbeing of all its pupils
  • Taking part in local activities for young people.

Other factors are also important, including:

  • Feeling loved, trusted, understood, valued and safe
  • Being interested in life and having opportunities to enjoy themselves
  • Being hopeful and optimistic
  • Being able to learn and having opportunities to succeed
  • Accepting who they are and recognising what they are good at
  • Having a sense of belonging in their family, school and community
  • Feeling they have some control over their own life

There is help available to children and young people and this includes:

  • Help and support from professionals
  • Schools
  • Parents
  • GP advice
  • Being able to talk through their thoughts and feelings in a safe and confidential setting
  • Child focused organisations
  • Clubs and groups

Organisations and supportive information that can help:

If you feel you may need some support, you can contact Care first. Care first is a leading provider of confidential professional counselling, information and advice services. All employees are eligible to use Care first and our services include; telephone counselling, information services and online support. Call Care first on the Freephone number provided by your organisation and you can speak to a professional in confidence.

If you would like to view the Webinar on ‘Children, Teenager and Young People’s Mental Health Awareness’ this is being delivered live on Friday 14th May at 12pm, please use the below link to register for this session –

https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/7883117255262073612

If you are unable to join the webinar live, a recording of the session can be accessed using the same link above after the webinar has taken place.

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Skin Cancer Awareness Month – May 2021

May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month.

Cancer Research UK – Oxford Centre

In recognition of May being Skin Cancer Awareness Month the Cancer Research UK Oxford Centre will be posting a series of blog posts highlighting the contribution of Oxford researchers to global efforts to tackle Melanoma.

Melanoma is the 5th most common cancer in the UK, and although it is more common in older people, it is relatively common in younger people. In 2015 about 16,000 people in the UK were diagnosed with melanoma, and within the last decade this number has increased by almost 50%. Over 2,500 of these people will develop advanced disease. Treatment of Advanced Melanoma has recently been transformed by introducing immunotherapies and targeted inhibitors in the treatment of patients who are not cured by surgery.

The British Association Of Dermatologists

The British Association of Dermatologists (BAD) currently runs a national campaign around skin cancer called Sun Awareness, which includes national Sun Awareness Week in May. This campaign is overseen by the BAD’s Skin Cancer Prevention Committee, comprised of leading medical professionals with expertise in skin cancer, vitamin D and public health messaging.

Sun Awareness is the British Association of Dermatologists’ annual campaign to raise awareness of skin cancer. The campaign runs from April to September annually and includes Sun Awareness Week in May. The campaign is two-pronged and combines prevention and detection advice. The first aim is to encourage people to regularly self-examine for skin cancer. The second is to teach people about the dangers of sunburn and excessive tanning, and to discourage people from using sunbeds, in light of the associated risks of skin cancer. In addition to public education about the dangers of sunbed use, the BAD has also been involved in campaigning for legislation to regulate the sunbed industry and is continuing to push towards further and improved regulation.

Useful Resources:

Photo by Luke Braswell on Unsplash

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National Walking Month

May is National Walking Month started by Living Streets.

Walking is good for our minds, our bodies and our neighbourhoods and has been a lifeline during the past year, helping people stay active and connected. That’s why we want everyone to keep going and pledge to #WalkThisMay!

Living Streets #Try20 tips are designed to help you fit 20 minutes of walking into your day. 

Health experts recommend a brisk daily walk as an easy way to improve your health with a 20 minute walk being shown to reduce the risk of a number of preventable health conditions, including certain cancers, depression, heart disease and Type 2 diabetes.

Whether you’re walking as a family, trying to fit in some exercise whilst working from home, or if you’re restricted to indoor exercise – our #Try20 tips have something for you.

For more information about this campaign please check out Living Streets website:

https://www.livingstreets.org.uk/get-involved/campaign-with-us/national-walking-month

They also have resources to aid walking at work, walking to school, walking at home, etc.

WALKING AT WORK

How we work has changed drastically for a lot of us in recent months. 

Walking can also help ease two of the big side effects of the coronavirus pandemic – isolation and inactivity.

Whether you are walking at work or walking from home – they have something for you.

From Walking Works – their walking programme designed for workplaces – to their spinning wheel of tips to inspire you to walk more.

WALKING WORKS

Walking Works is their programme for embedding the culture of walking into workplaces.

The programme has been re-developed so it’s appropriate to run safely and effectively during the pandemic.

Workplaces across the country are taking steps to be more active, more productive, healthier and happier – join them!

#WalkingWorks

FIND OUT MORE ABOUT WALKING WORKS

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How COVID-19 has affected our Mental Health – Care First Webinar 13th May 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected millions of people around the world. As the virus spread and people became ill restrictions were put into place to recduce the spread of the virus. This meant all of our lives have been majory disrupted, our social lives restricted, living in isolation or within an intense living situation, with constant reminders of the devastation going on outside.

Since the vaccine rollout it is looking hopeful that we can begin returning to some form of normaility, but what has over a year of this done for our mental health? It is likely that the focus will soon need to shift from our physical health onto our mental health, but how exactly have we been affected?

How is mental health affected by the pandemic?

In a survey it was found that in the UK 69% of surveyed adults were feeling some worry about the effect the pandemic is having on their life, with the main concerns being worried about the future (53%), feeling generally stressed or anxious (56%) and feeling bored (49%).

It has been shown that mental health has worsened from pre-pandemic levels, with different demographic groups being affected differently with young adults and women being hit the hardest. However, mental health symptoms fell in early June when lockdown measures were eased, but for some groups levels of anxiety and depression remained high despite this.

Reaosns for worsening mental health during the pandemic

Social isolation

Social isolation has been a major factor in the pandemic, but surprisingly it has been reported that the levels of people claiming to feel loneliness has not increased all that much since pre-pandemic. However, this is a subjective measure as social isolation can affect people in different ways aside from loneliness. One of those ways is domestic abuse, calls to the national helpline for domestic abuse were 49% higher than usual during the first 3 weeks of lockdown. The social isolation and lockdown also meant that many people didn’t have their usual friends/family that they would usually rely on as coping mechanisms.

Jobs and finances

There has been a huge amount of uncertainty surrounding jobs during the pandemic; as many were furloughed and businesses struggling to stay afloat withouth being open, resulting in over a third of full-time workers surveyed saying they were concerned about losing their job and thus being unable to keep up with rent payments, food etc. The financial stresses causes were just one factor of the affects on mental health. Work can also be a stimulating factor for many and being furloughed or losing a job could put an individual’s mental health at an additional risk.

What will happen moving forwards?

Above are some of the main effects on mental health which many individuals have experienced over the last year, but there are many more that will be felt by different people across the world. The longer lasting knock on effects of the mental health issues experienced during this pandemic will need careful monitoring.

What if you are struggling with your mental health?

As previously mentioned, there are a huge range of consequential effects being felt from the pandemic. If you feel that your mental health has been affected and you would like to speak with a Counsellor for some support, please do make the most of your access to Care first and the support available to you, Counsellors are available 24/7 and they will be able to offer support and provide useful resources that could help you to cope better with the strain from the past year.

More information

If you would like to view the Webinar on ‘How COVID-19 has affected our Mental Health’ this is being delivered live on Thursday 13th May at 12:00pm, please use the following link to register for this session –

https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/6189437240419049740

If you are unable to join the webinar live, a recording of the session can be accessed using the same link above after the webinar has taken place.

Care first is a leading provider of confidential, professional counselling, information and advice services. All employees are eligible to use Care first, our services include; telephone counselling, information services and online support. Call Care first on the Freephone number provided by your organisation and you can speak to a professional in confidence.

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Mental Health Awareness – Care First Webinar 12th May 2021

Mental Health Awareness Week will take place from 10-16 May 2021. It is an annual event when there is an opportunity for the whole of the UK to focus on achieving good mental health.

The Mental Health Foundation started the event 21 years ago. Each year the Foundation continues to set the theme, organise and host the Week. The event has grown to become one of the biggest awareness weeks across the UK and globally.

Mental Health Awareness Week is open to everyone. It is all about starting conversations about mental health and the things in our daily lives that can affect it. The Week is an opportunity for people to talk about all aspects of mental health, with a focus on providing help and advice.

We all deserve to feel safe and supported when talking about our mental health. However, mental health stigma leaves people feeling isolated and ashamed. People feel that they will be treated differently if they are known to be living with a mental illness and, as a result, many keep themselves to themselves because of the fear and at worst, this fear often prevents people getting support, finding employment or having open conversations. One person in every four people will be affected by a mental disorder at some stage of their lives and this is only on reported and diagnosed cases which means, the actual numbers could be so much higher.

It can be beneficial to help understand the term “mental health” to consider the following questions:

  • What is mental health?
  • What are “mental health problems?”
  • What is good mental health?

It is important to take care of ourselves and keep both our bodies and are minds well and healthy and be able to function well especially during all the concerns surrounding the Pandemic.

Making simple changes can help you manage more effectively, but like anything else, we need to practice so think of some simple steps which would help and support your mental health, we have outlined some below to consider –

  • Talk about your feelings
  • Keep active
  • Eat well
  • Drink sensibly
  • Keep in touch
  • Ask for help
  • Take a break
  • Do something you’re good at
  • Accept who you are
  • Care for others

How many of the things in the list do you do? Remember that it is good to talk about our mental health. If you feel you may need some support, you can contact Care first. Care first is a leading provider of confidential, professional counselling, information and advice services. All employees are eligible to use Care first, our services include; telephone counselling, information services and online support. Call Care first on the Freephone number provided by your organisation and you can speak to a professional in confidence.

Useful links for information:

If you would like to access further information about Mental Health Awareness week 2021 in more detail please follow the links listed here –

If you would like to watch the Webinar on ‘Mental Health Awareness’ this is being delivered live during Mental Health Awareness Week on Wednesday 12th May at 12pm, please use the below link to register for this session –

https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/8779374262287014928

If you are unable to join the webinar live, a recording of the session can be accessed using the same link above after the webinar has taken place.

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Mental Health Awareness Week 10th May – 16th May 2021

This year the theme is Nature and how connecting with the natural world can support good mental health.

Monday 10 May 2021: Marks the launch of Mental Health Awareness Week, the UK’s national week to raise awareness of mental health.

The week, which is hosted by the Mental Health Foundation, is in its 21st year and runs from 10-16 May.

This year, the theme for the week is ‘Nature’. Across the country, people will be celebrating the mental health benefits of being around nature in their local community in a range of digital and creative ways.

Mark Rowland Chief Executive of the Mental Health Foundation said: “Mental Health Awareness Week has grown to be one of the biggest awareness weeks in the UK. This year the theme is on nature and its central role for our mental health.  Since the beginning of the pandemic, millions of us turned to nature to help us get through lockdowns and our research shows that good mental health depends on us being able to connect with nature in some way and its power in both prevention of and recovery from poor mental health.

“During the week, we want to hear millions of people’s stories about how the natural world has supported their mental health.

“We also want to highlight the huge disparities between who is and who isn’t able to access nature. We want the week to explore how everyone across the UK can connect with nature and experience the mental health benefits wherever they live.”

Some of the ways people can participate in Mental Health Awareness Week:

  • During Mental Health Awareness Week, why not try to make a habit each day of connecting to the nature in your local area? Stop to listen to the birdsong, smell the freshly cut grass, take care of a house plant, notice any trees, flowers or animals nearby. Take a moment to appreciate these connections.
  • Share images/videos/or just sound recordings of the nature on your doorstep (and how this made you feel) on social media using #ConnectWithNature and #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek
  • Use Mental Health Foundation resources in your family, school, workplace and community to join with thousands of people who will be finding new ways to connect with nature in their local environment.

For more information about this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week visit mentalhealth.org.uk/mhaw or join the conversation on social media using #ConnectWithNature and #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek

About the Mental Health Foundation  

  • Our vision is of good mental health for all.
  • The Mental Health Foundation works to prevent mental health problems.
  • We drive change towards a mentally healthy society for all, and support communities, families and individuals to lead mentally healthy lives with a particular focus on those at greatest risk.
  • The Foundation is the home of Mental Health Awareness Week.
  • mentalhealth.org.uk
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COVID-19: Breaking The Silence – An Indian Psychological Perspective – Care First Webinar 11th May 2021

Care first are pleased to welcome Bee Mahimkar from our EAP Partner based in India as a guest speaker for our webinar ‘COVID-19: Breaking the silence – an Indian perspective’ which is being delivered live on Tuesday 11th May at 12pm.

During this session Bee will explore:

  • COVID-19- Impact on Indian population
  • Social, political & financial issues arising during this crisis
  • Locus of control
  • Stories we tell ourselves
  • How our brain works
  • Experiencing Loss
  • Coping Strategies
  • Accessing help
  • What gets in the way of accessing help
  • What are the options of help available

COVID-19: India Crisis

Stories of pain, death and loss; India is currently going through a crisis with a lack of medicines, oxygen tanks and hospital beds. Culturally many may feel there is absolutely no social security system, and most people in India have learnt to fend for themselves and their family. Their neurological and psychological perspective is to be silent and continue looking at life as glass half full or glass quarter full perspective and focus on their day to day work and family commitments.

However, with the COVID-19 pandemic the wounds and deep ruptures in the social and economic fabric of the country has brought tears, anguish and numbness.

During this live session Bee aims to bring to life the idea of cognitive flexibility and shift peoples focus towards creating an open safe space for all to explore the numbness they may be feeling within.

Bee will explore an aspect of personality psychology. The reality in India is that many family members may have no control over what happens to their loved ones.

Dealing with Death, Grief and Loss:

Bee will explore how culturally people are dealing with different kinds of grief and how we feel the World has changed for all of us.

To manage the range of grief we need to understand the stages of grief. During this session Bee will explain the Kubler-Ross grief cycle.

Bee will also explore the Psychologist J. W. Worden’s stage-based model for coping with the death of a loved one known as ‘the tasks of grief’, as well as Margaret Stroebe and Hank Schut’s dual process model of bereavement.

Bee will refer to the Stress and Emotional Resilience Cycle and help attendees to consider some positive coping strategies.

How can Care first help?

This session will also provide a reminder of the support available from Care first during what continues to be a challenging and traumatic time for many. If you feel you may need some support, you can contact Care first. Care first is a leading provider of confidential, professional counselling, information and advice services. All employees are eligible to use Care first, our services include; telephone counselling, information services and online support. Call Care first on the Freephone number provided by your organisation and you can speak to a professional in confidence.

If you would like to view the Webinar on ‘COVID-19 Internationally: The India crisis’ this is being delivered live on Tuesday 11th May at 12:00pm (GMT), please use the following link to register for this session –

https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/9020013377894557456

If you are unable to join the webinar live, a recording of the session can be accessed using the same link above after the webinar has taken place.

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Looking After Your Mental Health Whilst Working During The COVID-19 Pandemic – Care First Webinar 10th May 2021

During the COVID-19 Pandemic many of us have had to either work from home, or adhere to social distancing guidelines and wear personal protective equipment to protect us and our colleagues from the virus. When our working routine is affected with change it can bring a whole new range of challenges that you wouldn’t necessarily have had when working your normal routine before the COVID-19 pandemic hit. It may be now that restrictions are starting to ease that the way we work may start to change again. Looking after your mental wellbeing has never been more important.

Below are a number of tips to help you look after your mental wellbeing while working during the COVID-19 pandemic:

Look at what support is available to you

Have a look to see what support is available to you through your work place. For example if you are reading this then you more than likely have access to the Care first Employee Assistance Programme through your employer. Visit the Care first Lifestyle site to find out more about the support you have access to and speak with HR to find out about any other support that may be available to you through your employer.

Use your annual leave effectively

It is important to take annual leave to give yourself a chance to recharge and relax. Spreading your annual leave out throughout the year can help by giving you regular breaks from work as well as giving yourself something to look forward to.

Look after your general wellbeing

This may seem like an obvious one, if you’re working longer and later, you then roll out of bed in the morning and start again. This is not good for your routine or your wellbeing. If you’re not getting enough sleep then it’s no surprise you’re not feeling great. Try to stay healthy and active as much as possible, this will help you to keep motivated at work.

Be aware of your emotions

This isn’t such an obvious one. Try and be aware of the emotions you’re feeling around certain tasks. Your lack of motivation may be coming from your anxiety around a particularly challenging or lengthy task. Once you recognise this, try to accept the fact you’re going to have to face it sooner or later. By doing this it’ll make starting on a task less stressful, but also remind yourself as you go how good you’ll feel once it’s finally done!

Understand that change happens

Things will always be changing, whether that’s the current COVID-19 restrictions, or things in general life once we return to a sense of normality. By accepting that it happens it can make it easier to cope with, whereas trying to avoid change only inspires anxiety when it does happen.

Make simple changes

Making simple changes can help you to manage more effectively, but like anything else, we need to practice; so think
of some simple steps which would help and support your mental health, we have outlined some below to consider –

  • Talk about your feelings
  • Keep active
  • Eat well
  • Drink sensibly
  • Keep in touch
  • Ask for help
  • Take a break
  • Do something you’re good at
  • Accept who you are
  • Care for others

More Information

If you feel you may need some support, you can contact Care first. Care first is a leading provider of confidential professional counselling, information and advice services. All employees are eligible to use Care first and our services include; telephone counselling, information services and online support. Call Care first on the Freephone number provided by your organisation and you can speak to a professional in confidence.

If you would like to view the Webinar on ‘Looking after your mental health whilst working during the COVID-19 pandemic’ this is being delivered live on Monday 10th May at 12pm, please use the following link to register for this session –

https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/5814617025043021579

If you are unable to join the webinar live, a recording of the session can be accessed using the same link above after the webinar has taken place.

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The Importance of adhering to the COVID-19 Guidelines – Care First Webinar 7th May 2021

You’ve gotten the basics down: you’re wearing your mask, avoiding crowds, and keeping your distance from friends and family. But you likely still have questions. Does wearing a mask protect you, others, or both? How exactly will physical distancing help?

What can I do to protect myself and others from COVID-19?

The following actions help prevent the spread of COVID-19, as well as other coronaviruses and influenza:

  • Wear a face mask.
  • Maintain at least six feet/2 metres of distance between yourself and others.
  • Avoid large gatherings.
  • Socialize outdoors.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Minimize touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the bin.
  • Clean frequently touched objects and surfaces regularly.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water.
  • Get vaccinated as soon as you are eligible.

Do the protective measures work?

The chart above illustrates how protective measures such as limiting travel, avoiding crowds, social distancing, and thorough and frequent handwashing can slow down the development of new COVID-19 cases and reduce the risk of overwhelming the health care system.

What do I need to know about washing my hands effectively?

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing; and after handling anything that’s come from outside your home.

  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol, covering all surfaces of your hands and rubbing them together until they feel dry.
  • Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
  • The CDC’s handwashing website has detailed instructions and a video about effective handwashing procedures.

How does coronavirus spread?

Coronavirus spreads mainly from person to person. This can happen between people who are in close contact with one another. Droplets that are produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes may land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby, or possibly be inhaled into their lungs.

A person infected with coronavirus — even one with no symptoms — may emit aerosols when they talk or breathe. Aerosols are infectious viral particles that can float or drift around in the air for up to three hours. Another person can breathe in these aerosols and become infected with the coronavirus. This is why everyone should wear a mask when they go out in public.

If I want to visit friends and family, does it matter whether we meet indoors or outdoors?

You are better off meeting friends and family outdoors. We know that coronavirus spreads when someone breathes in virus that an infected person emits through coughs or sneezes, or when they talk or breathe. Research has shown that in a confined, laboratory setting, droplets containing viral particles can remain afloat for 8 to 14 minutes. Smaller infectious viral particles, called aerosols, can drift around in the air even longer.

Outdoors, air currents are more likely to scatter and dilute the virus, making transmission less likely than in a home, office, or other confined space with limited air circulation. Even outdoors, however, it’s important to maintain a physical distance of at least six feet (2 meters) and wear a mask, to reduce the risk even further.

Coronavirus also spreads when a person touches a contaminated surface and then touches their eyes, nose, or mouth. If you are participating in an outdoor gathering, bring your own foods, drinks, plates, cups and utensils.

Useful sources & Information:

Some of the information sourced for this article was originally published by Harvard and the CDC. If you would like to access this and further information in more detail please follow the links below and for the latest information about the COVID-19 guidelines in your area always refer to the .Gov site –

https://www.health.harvard.edu/diseases-and-conditions/preventing-the-spread-of-the-coronavirus

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html

https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus

How can Care first help?

If you feel you may need some emotional or practical support, you can contact Care first on the Freephone number. Care first is a leading provider of confidential, professional counselling, information and advice services. Whilst our BACP accredited Counsellors are available 24/7 to provide support with emotional issues, our expertly trained Information Specialists are available 8am-8pm Monday-Friday to provide advice on any practical issues that may be causing you a stress or worry and help you feel more in control of a situation.

All employees are eligible to use Care first, our services include; telephone counselling, information services and online support. Call Care first on the Freephone number provided by your organisation and you can speak to a professional in confidence.

You can join our live webinar titled ‘The Importance of adhering to COVID guidelines’ on Friday 7th May at 12pm. Please use the following link to register your attendance:

https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/2044127770433595152

If you are unable to join the webinar live, a recording of the session can be accessed using the same link above after the webinar has taken place.

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Sun Safety – Care First Webinar Thurs 6th May 2021

With many of us eager to get out and enjoy the sunshine this summer after a very long winter cooped up indoors due to COVID-19 restrictions, it is important that we stay safe and protect ourselves in the sun.

Sun safety is important for everyone; we must all practice this to avoid damage to our eyes and skin. Sun damage to our skin can cause skin cancer so it is vitally important to know how to protect yourself.

The risks of sun damage

It can be very tempting and easy to get excited when we start getting sunshine to just head out and soak up as much sun as possible, but doing so in an unsafe way can cause eye damage and skin damage which can also lead to skin cancer in people as early as their twenties. Skin cancer is the most common of all cancers.

Over years of exposure and potential damage to your skin from sun exposure your skin may also age by gaining more wrinkles, become dryer and you will eventually start bruising easier.

Practice the 5 S’s for personal sun safety

An easy way to remember ways to protect yourself is by practicing the 5 S’s:

  1. Slip on a t-shirt/top to cover your skin
  2. Slop on SPF 30+ sunscreen to protect your exposed skin
  3. Slap on a hat to protect your head and face
  4. Slide on some quality sunglasses to protect your eyes
  5. Shade from the sun when you can to give yourself breaks

Things to consider:

  • The sun is strongest in the UK from March until October between the times of 11:00 and 15:00 each day
  • Make sure any children you’re responsible for are also well protected and hydrated
  • Make sure the sunscreen has not passed its expiry date
  • If you’re going out, take sunscreen with you but also apply twice. 30 minutes before you go out and again just before you leave
  • Apply sunscreen again straight after you’ve been in water even if it is “water resistant” as after sweating or drying with a towel may have rubbed it off

If you burn

You should be protecting your skin from burning at all times when exposed to the sun but if you do you should:

  • Treat the burnt areas with cool water and then apply after sun cream
  • If sore take painkillers such as ibuprofen or paracetamol to help ease the pain and discomfort
  • Stay out of the sun until all signs of redness are gone

Other useful links

If you would like to access further information about sun safety in more detail please follow the links listed here:

  • NHS Website for Sun Safety
  • Dangers of Prolonged Sun Exposure
  • UV Radiation and Your Skin
  • 10 Tips for Protecting Your Skin from the Sun

More information

If you feel you may need some support, you can contact Care first. Care first is a leading provider of confidential, professional counselling, information and advice services. All employees are eligible to use Care first, our services include; telephone counselling, information services and online support. Call Care first on the Freephone number provided by your organisation and you can speak to a professional in confidence.

If you would like to view the Webinar on ‘Sun Safety’ this is being delivered live on Thursday 6th May at 12:00pm, please use the following link to register for this session –

https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/2981322894670410255

If you are unable to join the webinar live, a recording of the session can be accessed using the same link above after the webinar has taken place.

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