Summertime, the season to enjoy the beauty of the great outdoors, is upon us. With the sunny days comes the risk of sunburn and damage to the skin.
Sun exposure can cause wrinkles and age spots. Sunburn is linked to skin cancer. Having five or more sunburns in a lifetime doubles the risk of developing melanoma, which is the most dangerous form of skin cancer.
Here are some tips to keep your skin healthy this summer.
• Limit sun exposure between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
• Wear protective clothing and a hat when possible.
• Sunglasses that protect against both UVA and UVB rays offer the best protection for the eyes.
• Use a water-resistant sunscreen and lip balm that has an SPF of 30 or higher.
• The sunscreen should provide both UVA and UVB protection.
• Check the expiration date to make sure the sunscreen hasn’t expired.
• Apply a golf-ball-size amount of sunscreen to bare skin 30 minutes before going out in the sun.
• Reapply sunscreen at least every two hours.
• Mist the scalp and hairline with a spray sunscreen.
• Be aware that overcast weather can still cause a sunburn, and reflective surfaces such as water, cement and sand increase the chance of getting sunburned.
McGregor is a health educator at Sutter Gould Medical Foundation.