Spending time outdoors especially after months of being cooped up can be fun and exciting! However, the physicians of Premier Surgical would like to remind you that with fun and in the sun comes the responsibility of protecting your skin.
Your skin is the largest organ of your body. Exposing it without any form of protection from the sun can cause irreversible skin damage. It can cause dark spots, wrinkles, leathery skin, and even skin cancer (about 1 in 5 Americans will develop skin cancer by the age of 70).
Enjoy the outdoors while still keeping your skin healthy with these tips:
• Always wear sunscreen
Wearing sunscreen even when it’s cloudy is one of the simplest ways you can protect your skin. Make sure the label says “broad spectrum” so you can have protection from both UVA and UVB rays. For maximum protection, make sure it has at least a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30.
If you’re staying outside for long, make sure you re-apply the sunscreen, following the product’s instructions.
• Consider wearing protective clothing
Aside from sunscreen, wearing protective clothing is also one way of protecting your skin from sun damage.
A hat that has a brim of at least 2 inches can shade your eyes and provides another layer of protection on your face. Sunglasses can protect your eyes and the delicate skin around them. As for the rest of the body, lightweight long-sleeve tops and pants can provide consistent coverage. This can be helpful especially if you keep on forgetting to re-apply your sunscreen.
• Limit your sun exposure
Even with sunscreen, deliberately exposing yourself under the sun for an extended period of time is never a good idea.
Seek shade if you can (under a tree or bring a beach tent if you’re staying out for long at the beach). It also helps to avoid the sun between 10 A.M. and 4 P.M. It is in these times when the sun’s rays are the strongest.
• Skip the tanning beds
Having that bronze glow may be enticing, but it’s not worth the risk. A single indoor tanning bed session can increase your chance of developing skin cancer by 20%.
If you really want to achieve that sun-kissed glow, tanning lotion can be a better alternative.
• Check your skin often
Like many types of cancer, there is a better treatment outcome for skin cancer if it’s diagnosed early. So, assess your skin on a regular basis. If there are skin growths that look unusual or a mole that seems to grow bigger, have them checked by a specialist.
Premier Surgical of Knoxville and Cleveland, TN has surgeons who specialize in diagnosing and treating skin cancers. To learn more about skin cancer, visit https://www.premiersurgical.com/melanoma-and-other-skin-cancers/.