Believe it or not, Australia is the skin cancer capital of the world. Every year, almost 12,000 people get some form of melanoma, and skin cancer makes up about 80% of cancer diagnosed in Australia. Which is why preventing this disease in children is a top priority of schools in North Queensland. In a study by James Cook University, researchers have determined that a small increase in the hemline of school uniforms ups protection from the sun by as much as 9%. Here’s a brief discussion from Perm-A-Pleat:
What Can We Do About It?
Katie Cliff of the Queensland Cancer Council says, “Children spend most of their week in a school environment during peak UV times, and we need to ensure they have the best protection.”
Small changes in the current school uniform designs have greatly reduced sun exposure in children and researchers have found out several factors which could affect UV protection. Just by increasing the length of sleeves and shorts, children can have more protection from the sun, reducing their risk for melanoma or non-melanoma skin cancers early on.
Research supervisor Simone Harrison admits, “It’s a big gain for a little effort.”
A New Look On School Uniforms
The study reports certain differences in the school uniforms and their relationship with specific areas in the country. Students in more rural settings make use of uniforms that offer less protection than their urban city-based counterparts.
Ms. Harrison clarifies that redesigning the whole uniform as a whole is not necessary, so school uniform manufacturers can all breathe a sigh of relief. Minor alterations such as the choice of cloth can already make so much difference in preventing skin cancer in children.
A Little Modesty Goes a Long Way
The case takes a more delicate situation in teenagers who are continually pushing for shorter and shorter uniforms because shorter sleeves and shorts mean a cooler body temperature during the day’s hottest hours. The research shows, however, that body core and skin temperature show no change whether you’re wearing long sleeved shirts or less modest choices of clothing.