Exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays is well known to increase your risk of getting skin cancer and cause premature aging of the skin. UV rays come from various sources, but the sun, sunlamps, and tanning beds are the most common. Blue light from computers and screens is an emerging damaging ray that can penetrate even deeper into the skin causing more damage than UVA and UVB!
It is essential you are aware of how to reduce your exposure to natural and artificial UV to lower your chances of getting skin cancer. Protecting your skin from the sun when working or recreating outdoors can also help in reducing your risk.
Our team of skin experts at Dermatology + Plastic Surgery, led by board-certified dermatologist Dr. Anita Saluja, recommends using the following tips to protect yourself:
Protect Yourself from the Sun’s UV Rays with 3 easy steps:
AVOID, APPLY, & APPOINTMENT
Proper protection from the ultraviolet rays is crucial all year round, especially in Florida, not just during the summer season. The rays can reach your skin surface on both hot and cool days, even cloudy days. These rays tend to reflect off various surfaces such as:
According to meteorological estimates, the UV rays tend to be strongest from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. standard time. The UV index provides a forecast of the strength of the UV rays every single day.
If you don’t like using a sunscreen every day, you can check this index before leaving the house to establish whether to apply it or not. If the index provides an index of 3 or higher, it means you have to protect your skin from overexposure to the sun’s UV rays.
Refrain from “Sunbathing” AND Tanning Indoors
Dr. Saluja, a certified dermatologist, insists that tans are NOT an indication of good health. Your skin will start to produce extra melanin when the ultraviolet rays penetrate the skin surface and reach its innermost layer.
The extra melanin will begin moving towards the surface, making it appear as though you have a tan. You should view a change in your skin color, particularly once caused by exposure to ultraviolet rays, as a sign of an underlying injury.
Sunbathing and tanning indoors has the following effect on the skin:
• It exposes an individual to high levels of ultraviolet rays, known to cause cancer.
• It can lead to the development of a serious injury. Indoor tanning burns and accidents send over 3,000 people to the ER each year.
• Indoor tanning doesn’t protect you from sunburns. The emergence of a ‘base tan’ means a person suffers from skin damage.
As seen in this article, over-exposure to UV rays are the leading cause of premature aging, skin damage, and cancer.
- Apply a mineral-based (reef-safe zinc or titanium) broad-spectrum sunscreen containing a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30+
See some of our favorite products here: Sun Protection
• Remain in the shade whenever possible
• Wear sunglasses that can wrap around your face. The sunglasses can block UVA and UVB rays which will also protect from formation of cataracts
• Wear a wide-brimmed hat to protect your face, neck, ears, and head
• Wear comfortable clothing that easily covers your arms and legs
To learn more about what you can do to reduce your risk of cancer, schedule an appointment with the experts at Dermatology + Plastic Surgery today by filling in this form.