‘Having chunks cut out was wake-up call I needed’
BRISBANE mother Alyshia Morris is urging others to be more sun smart this summer after she was diagnosed with two stage 1 melanomas.
"In 2013 I was shaken to my absolute core when I was diagnosed with two melanomas at the age of 32," she said.
"Fortunately, they were successfully removed. I was extremely lucky that it was a positive outcome. Now I have two check-ups a year and I am vigilant in the sun."
Following the scare, Ms Morris felt compelled to find a better way to protect herself from the sun. After little success in finding a suitably protective swimsuit, a frustrated Ms Morris took matters into her own hands, creating sun-safe swimwear brand Shade Swim.
"Having big chunks of skin cut out of my body was the wake-up call I needed. I decided then and there that I had to make something that not only looked stylish but was sun safe too."
According to Melanoma Institute Australia, one Australian dies from a melanoma every five hours, with an estimated 14,000 diagnosed each year.
The institute's chief executive, Matthew Browne, said along with New Zealand, "Australia has the highest melanoma rates in the world, and we know that sunburn is the biggest risk factor for developing melanoma".
As of today, Ms Morris' range of stylish swimsuits is available online. The locally made women's-only range features long sleeves and is made from a UPF50+ fabric that protects skin from UV rays.