Protect yourself and your family from the risk of
skin cancer, while still having the beach time that you daydreamed about last
winter. Just follow some key steps to
prevent excess sun exposure that can lead to sunburn, eye damage, wrinkles, and
life-threatening melanoma. Safeguard your children, too. Research indicates that one serious childhood
sunburn could trigger skin cancer in later years.
If you’re headed
for the shore, the lake, or the backyard pool, apply a broad spectrum sunscreen
with an SPF from 30to 50 to all exposed skin. A product with SPF 30
screens out 97 percent of UVB rays, which are the short solar rays that can
cause burning. Don’t fall for sky-high SPF numbers. Recent research has shown
that sunscreens with SPFs beyond 50 do not proportionately increase the level
important to get a sunscreen with zinc and/or titanium as active ingredients,” explains
Dr. Saryna Young, WESTMED
dermatologist. “Then you have a good sunscreen, no matter what the SPF rating,”
Also, the idea now
is to wear enough sunscreen to get the most protection. The latest rule of thumb is to apply a
teaspoon per body part or area. Don’t forget your ears. (Basal cell skin
cancers can start there.) And reapply at least every two hours and especially
after swimming, perspiring or toweling off.
Other points to
a wide-brimmed hat and UV protective sunglasses to protect the face and
sunscreen even on a cloudy day.
aware that concrete, sand and water reflect 85 to 90 percent of the sun’s damaging
rays, making you vulnerable to sunburn.
to get your outside activities completed in the early morning or late afternoon
as the sun is the strongest at the middle of the day.