5 Summer Sun Tips to Prevent Skin Damage

After spending months cooped up inside, we're all anxious to get out and enjoy some sunshine in the backyard or local park. However, even in our zeal for fresh air and time outdoors, it's still important to remember to protect our skin from sun damage.

Dr. Peter Karlsberg and his physician's assistant Michele Ayans offer state-of-the-art care for all your cosmetic dermatological needs at the Ventura Institute for Dermatologic Arts offices in Ventura and Camarillo, California. Whether you're seeking laser treatment, injectables or any number of other services to assist you in looking and feeling your best, we can help.

Ways to prevent sun damage

Sunscreen

Much skin damage can be avoided by wearing sunscreen daily. Make sure you apply enough (at least one ounce) and do it 15 to 30 minutes before going out in the sun. Select one that blocks UVA and UVB radiation, has an SPF of at least 30 or more, and is water resistant. Don't forget lip balm with an SPF of 30+, too.

Avoidance

Nothing can protect your skin like avoiding the sun. Find shade when possible or use a pop-up tent. If that's not feasible, limit sun exposure when its rays are the strongest — from 10 am to 4 pm — and go out early in the morning and late in the afternoon or evening. Also, keep in mind UV rays can penetrate clouds, so your skin can get damaged even on cloudy days.

Protective clothing

Clothes can help protect your skin from sun damage though some kinds are more effective than others. Obviously long sleeve shirts are more helpful than short sleeve T-shirts. Ditto for pants and shorts. Dark colors typically block more UV rays than light, and dry clothes usually are better than those that are wet. The more you can see light through the fabric, the less protection it offers.

Another option is specially designed clothing that is tightly woven and often has a special coating to assist in absorbing the sun's harmful rays. These items typically have a UPF (UV protection factor) value that ranges from 15 to over 50.

Accessories

Wearing a wide-brimmed hat can keep damaging UV rays from hitting your face, ears, and neck and therefore is a better choice than a baseball cap.

Likewise, sunglasses that are large or a wraparound style offer the most protection for your eyes. Look for a notation that they meet ANSI UV requirements or have UV absorption up to 400 nm to make sure they will do the optimum blocking of harmful UVA and UVB rays.

Awareness of medication

Some medications like certain antibiotics, anti-inflammatories, blood pressure drugs, and others can make you more susceptible to damage from the sun's rays. Know if any of your prescriptions have this side effect and take extra precaution as needed.

While preventing harm to the skin from happening in the first place is ideal, sometimes just living life can result in damage. If you have any suspicious moles or marks or simply want to learn about options to help reduce the sun's effects on your skin, call us today at 805-214-6903 (Ventura) or 805-221-8789 (Camarillo) to make an appointment.

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