caret icon Back to all discussions

How to live with skin cancer in a country with high UV index ?


My name is Daniel, I am 34 years old. Actually I am not Australian and I don't live in Australia, I am blond hair guy with white skin from Europe, but 8 years I lived in Thailand. In 2018 first time I was diagnosed that I have melanoma. I had 2 surgeries to cut the cancer sign (big black point on the chest) and a few sentinel lymph nodes. For 4 years I have a rest from melanoma, I stayed in Thailand, however I was very careful about sun (I used SPF 30 and 50, I didn't have any sun bath, I swam only in t-shirt, I avoid walking iunder sun between 10 am-4pm, diet etc.). 4 years was ok. Unfortunately 6-8 months ago cancer came back- I had horrible pain of my back, tumours on the head and other parts of the body, black and deep blue points. Now I have targeted therapy in cancer which gives great effects- tumours and pain in back disappeared, I feel much better. I am sure after a few months I will be fine.

I am writing in your comunity forum because I heard in Australia melanoma cancer is often case and there is hot climate, high UV (just like in Thailand) almost all year. So I would like to ask Australian people who have or had in the past melanoma cancer:

- how do you manage yourself in the hot weather, when UV is 10 or more? I mean how can you work, live, exist, what’s about free time activities, in the hot weather, sunny days if you have or had melanoma cancer ?

- how do you protect yourself from skin cancer in Australia ?

- what could you reccomand me, advise me from your experience?

I don't hide your answers can help me very much. I am sure if there are people with melanoma who have normal life in country with the high UV index and hot climate, and they can exist there, I can use the same paterns. Because I don't want to spend the rest of my life in some cool country, far from Thailand and happy life what I had there.

Thank you for your replies,

Best regards,


  1. Hi Daniel, I am an Aussie. Live in a beautiful area with so many beaches.
    I do remember my face, shoulders and legs getting sunburn a lot before I was 11.
    But as puberty hit I was so self conscious of my body I Never wore swimmers after 11 even as an adult.
    My first melanoma was in 2004, it was on my inner calf muscle, ( luckily for me found by accident). My 2nd melanoma on the back of my shoulder was in 2020. I have pretty much lost count of bcc’s and have had 2 scc. One on the side of my nose very close to my eye needed a round of radiation to kill cells that spread into a nerve near my eye.
    Oh and the amount I have had either shaved or frozen off .
    I know the damage has been done, I have very bad sun damaged skin, my arms look horrible and I am very self conscious of them.
    I constantly have sunscreen on, ( i specially apply it when my grandkids come over to show them it’s good to use).
    I have a wide brim hat at back and front doors, in both cars. Same with bottles of sunscreen.
    The majority of my skin cancers are on my right side. I pretty sure it’s from driving the car and the sun burns while driving.
    When I go out in sun without the protection I can feel my skin tingle and gets itchy. I have dark brown hair, hazel eyes, very white skin that burns, blisters and peels , never had any form of tan.
    If I go out in kayak or walking I generally will wear a long sleeve sunshirt.
    I must admit when I got to the pool for exercise I look pretty silly . Fully covered and still with hat and sunnies too lol, But I don’t care. I hope to prevent any more new skin cancers.
    Just keep your self covered up and sunscreen on. Keep up your regular skin checks and you can still enjoy yourself and do all that outdoorsy stuff. You don’t have to lock yourself up. Get out in the fresh air, works wonders.

    1. Hi ,
      I’m sure it feels overwhelming for you to consider your happiness in Thailand versus your challenging journey with skin cancer. I’m glad you reached out to our community. Thank you for offering some great tips! I thought I’d also mention that some clothing types are more protective than others. Here is an article with more info: I hope some of this info is helpful. Please keep us updated with how you’re doing if you’d like. We are here for you!
      All the best,
      Christina, Team

      Please read our rules before posting.