The Importance of Skin Protection
Hot weather is here, and with it comes days spent outside at the pool, lake, beach or doing other outdoor activities. As the body’s largest organ, our skin has a big job and it’s important to keep it protected from the harmful UV rays of the sun. This can help prevent skin cancer as well as overall damage to the skin that can cause wrinkles, sagging, sunspots, and other signs of damage and premature aging.
Make sun protection a habit
The sun isn’t just emitting dangerous rays when we’re at the pool or beach. In fact, even on cloudy days up to 80 percent of the sun’s UV radiation reaches the earth.
Whether you’re walking your dog, mowing your grass, or taking your kids to the park, healthy sun habits will keep your skin protected. Seek shade whenever possible, wear sun-safe clothing, a wide-brimmed hat and UV-blocking sunglasses for a complete sun protection strategy.
I’m not fair-skinned, do I still need sunscreen?
Yes! Regardless of your complexion, the sun’s rays are damaging to skin over our lifetime, even if you aren’t seeing a sunburn. This is why it’s important for everyone, from children to adults, to wear sunscreen.
One exception is babies under the age of 6 months; their skin is highly sensitive so keeping them out of the sun using shade structures and sun-protective clothing are the best ways to safeguard infants from the sun’s rays.
What type of sunscreen should I use?
Look for a sunscreen that has a minimum of 15 SPF and has broad spectrum protection, meaning it protects against both UVA and UVB rays. If you are going to be outside for extended periods of time use at least SPF 30.
Don’t forget to reapply sunscreen. Doctors recommend reapplication every two hours, even more often if you are swimming or sweating.
Headed to the beach or pool? Here’s what to pack:
- Sunscreen (broad-spectrum, SPF 15 or higher; waterproof if you will be around water)
- Rashguard or coverup
- Umbrella or another source of shade
- Water to drink
Have a burn and need treatment? Find your nearest HealthCARE Express today.