Research shows the sun's rays are getting stronger
Published Tuesday, August 7, 2012 4:20PM CST
Last Updated Tuesday, August 7, 2012 5:58PM CST
Experts with the Canadian Institutes of Health Research say the ozone layer isn't providing as much protection from the sun as it used to.
The ozone layer, which helps protect us from ultra violet rays, is depleting and that means the harmful rays are becoming more powerful.
"It's hard to say how much more is being received at the surface of the earth, but it's definitely a serious problem," said Elliot Drobetsky, who is a professor at the University of Montreal.
The Canadian Cancer Society says non-melanoma skin cancer rates have tripled since the 1960s, while the rate of the more dangerous melanoma form of skin cancer has increased by 15 times.
"Lots of people like to believe that it's not going to happen to them or that they really do want to have that tan or that glow, which of course is skin damage," says Kira Moshtaghi Nai of the Canadian Cancer Society
Despite the dangers, it's tough to find people complaining about the weather this summer in Manitoba.
"I’ve been working indoors most of the time, so when I do have a day off I’m outside," said Jolanda Kroll, who lives in Brandon.
Many Manitobans say they do take precautions before heading outside.
"You coat your nose, ears and face a little bit more faithfully than you used to 20 years ago because the sun's rays are definitely more harmful. You notice you get burned quicker, sooner faster it just doesn't take long," said Dave Desautels.
Experts recommend watching the UV Index, plan activities before 11:00 a.m. and after 4:00 p.m., find shade and use sunscreen
The sun does have its benefits: you can get your daily dose of Vitamin D through expose to sunlight.
However, experts say don't overdo it. You only need about 15 to 20 minutes in the sun to get enough Vitamin D.
-- with a report from CTV’s Josh Crabb