May marks National Skin Cancer and Melanoma Awareness Month
Whether you’re heading to the shore or a pool, or just planning some activities in your own backyard, don’t leave sun protection out of your plans. Spending time in the sun can put you at risk for sunburns and skin damage if you’re not using proper protection. And damage from the sun can cause uneven skin tone, wrinkles, age spots and skin cancer. Follow these tips to help keep your skin safe this summer.
Sunscreen is key
Using sunscreen each day is important, especially for those who find themselves spending a lot more time in the sun.
Related: Sunscreen tips from a dermatology physican assistant.
Dress to protect
What you wear can help protect your skin from sun damage. Hats or other coverings like scarves help protect sensitive skin on your scalp. Remember to protect your eyes with sunglasses. And if visiting the beach, bring your coverups and umbrellas to protect your skin from excess sun exposure.
Choosing a sunscreen
Since sunscreen varies based on skin type, the best sunscreen for you will be one that you feel comfortable wearing. Make sure to select a broad-spectrum option that protects from both UVA and UVB ultraviolet rays with at least a 30-SPF (sun protection factor) rating. You can opt for a higher SPF for additional sun protection if spending more time outdoors. You may also want to choose a water-resistant option for those days you spend at the pool, at the beach or engaged in activities that produce excessive sweating.
The right amount of sunscreen
According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, 1 ounce (approximately a shot glass filled with sunscreen) is usually enough to cover exposed areas of the face and body. Make sure to apply a complete coat about 15 minutes before going outdoors.
When to reapply
It’s important to reapply sunscreen at least every two hours and even more often if you are in water, sweating or toweling off.
Concerned about a spot?
The providers at UT Health Physicians specalizing in dermatological concerns provide annual skin screenings as well as modern treatments for all conditions of the skin, hair and nails. To learn more or to make an appointment, visit UTHealthCare.org/DeZavala.