Sunscreen is an important part of a complete sun protection strategy.
When the UV index is the strongest, it’s important to wear sunscreen most of the time, and especially between 11 A.M. AND 2 P.M. to avoid potential life-long damages of the sun.
You need to balance your need for Vitamin D with protecting yourself from the damages that sun can cause. You don’t need that much sun time to get your weekly dose of Vitamin D. By getting outside in the sunlight every day for 15 to 30 minutes, gets you all the vitamin D you need. If for some reason you don’t get enough sun – say, you work all night and sleep all day, you can take Vitamin D supplements, drink orange juice, or eat dairy products and fish.
The sun is the leading cause of skin cancer and contributes to skin aging. By applying an SPF of 15 or higher, you can avoid being part of the 69 % of Americans who don’t wear sunscreen and risk the following:
- skin cancer
- premature aging
- burning and blistering of the skin
- cataracts and eye damage
- immune system suppression caused by an over exposure to UV radiation
Here are some tips for using sunscreen:
- When choosing a sunscreen, make sure to choose one with UVA and UVB protection in order to protect your skin from the cancerous rays and from the rays that make your skin burn.
- Apply sunscreen 20-30 minutes before going out in the sun.
- Apply sunscreen evenly to avoid certain areas from getting burnt and blotchy.
- Wear sunglasses that wrap around and block as close to 100 % of both UVA and UVB rays as possible (cdc.gov)
- Most importantly, REAPPLY, REAPPLY, REAPPLY. This should be done every 1- 2 hours, or when you feel a burn coming on. You be the judge.