You already know that a trip to the beach can give you a nasty sunburn, but the nitty gritty of sun safety is actually much more complex. Wrinkle-causing UVA rays and burn-inducing UVB's can pose a serious risk to your health (and good looks). So what can you do? Kevin P. Boyd makes the case to slap on some physical or chemical SPF daily.
What are the top five reasons you believe everyone should wear sunscreen?
1. The ozone layer is depleting and your body needs shielding from harmful rays.
2. Skin cancer rates are on the rise and sunscreen has been proven to decrease the development of skin cancer.
3. It helps to prevent facial brown spots and skin discolorations.
4. It also helps to reduce the appearance of facial red veins and blotchiness.
5. It slows down the development of wrinkled, premature aging skin.
When to Use Sunscreen
Everyone needs sunscreen when outdoors for more than 15 minutes between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. or if they're in direct sunlight coming through a window (UVA rays pass through glass). You should wear UV protection on cloudy days, too.
How to Use
Apply sunscreen 15 to 30 minutes before going outdoors. Cover all areas of the skin that will be exposed to the sun's rays. Apply liberally. Most people, including children, need about 1 oz. of product to cover exposed areas sufficiently. Reapply every two hours. If you are swimming, reapply more frequently.
Children are at particular risk because they forget to reapply as often as needed when they are busy playing. Beach and lake vacations present special challenges for parents to monitor sunscreen coverage on children because water enhances the effect of radiation. According to a recent study discussed in Science Daily, 7-year-old children who vacationed at the beach had a 5 percent increase in skin moles--a major risk factor in malignant melanoma.
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