Lunch time sun damage poses serious health threat

Office workers enjoying the summer sunshine at lunch time are seriously risking their health by failing to take adequate sun care precautions, according to research from Tesco Bank and their health insurance team.

Only one in ten Brits applies sun cream before heading out for lunch, leaving the majority of us at risk of potential skin damage this summer. And while many of us associate the risks of too much sun with summer holidays, 16% have got sunburn from being out without protection during their lunch break.

While we may think that the south of England gets some of the best weather during the summer months, it is workers in Newcastle who have most felt the effects of being out in the sun. A quarter of those in Newcastle have been burnt from being out in the sun without protection during their lunch hour. This compares with a fifth of workers in second and third-placed cities Brighton & Hove and Portsmouth. While it may not be known as a sun hot spot, the results correlate with the fact that only 7% of those in Newcastle apply sun cream when heading out of the office.

A sunny day lures most of us (86%) out of the office and workers eat their lunch outdoors on average of three to four times a week when the weather permits. Sunbathing during the lunch hour is a popular pastime for 15 per cent of us.

Half the people questioned felt that the sun was stronger abroad than in the UK and this could explain why so many people are leaving themselves exposed to skin damage during the working week.

Jeremy Sutton, Head of Health insurance at Tesco Bank, said: “We all enjoy time away from our desks at lunch time during the summer months. While the sun is out, it’s important to highlight the risk of spending long periods of time in the sun without protection at home as well as abroad.  It only takes one serious burn to potentially have lasting consequences when it comes to your skin. Prevention is always better than cure when it comes to your health.”