Summer is here. Many of us will be outdoors enjoying our favorite activities, going to the pool, playing tennis, and taking trips to parks or beaches. With more time spent in the sun, we need to be mindful of our exposure to the harmful ultraviolet rays. Find out how to keep your skin safe and healthy while you are having fun in the sun.
Stick with Shade
The most powerful rays from the sun are emitted between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. If you are unsure, follow the simple shadow rule. If your shadow is shorter than you are, protect yourself as much as possible. This is the perfect time to find a shady spot to put your feet up with a good book and enjoy summer to the fullest.
A day out in the sun means more skin is exposed to potentially damaging UVA and UVB rays. A cover-up and hat help to ward off sun damage. Today, there are actually clothing items that provide additional sun protection. Look for labels listing a UV protection factor
(UPF) to ensure you are getting full protection.
Look for products labeled “broad spectrum,” because these formulas block both UVB and UVA rays. An SPF of 30 or higher is recommended, and should be applied approximately 30 minutes before heading outdoors. Reapply every two hours to maintain protection.
Don’t forget eye protection when in the sun. Sunglasses that feature UVB and UVA protection are essential for those bright summer days. Labels should assure you the stylish shades you choose “meet ANSI UV requirements,” which means lenses block 99% of UV rays.
Check it Out
Monthly self-exams and annual checks with the dermatologist will ensure any skin changes are checked out promptly. Early detection of skin cancer increases treatment options and improves prognosis. It also reduces the need for invasive surgeries. . If you notice an area of concern anytime, such as a mole that changes color or looks different from the rest, or a spot that does not heal away, contact your dermatologist as soon as possible for an accurate diagnosis.
At Center for Dermatology, we are committed to skin health and safety. While these steps are important during the summer or any time of year, regular visits to our office are also essential for early detection and proper skin care at any age. To schedule your first screening, contact Center for Dermatology at 770-682-2500.