My mother is a fair skinned woman in her late 40’s who grew up in San Diego and didn’t pay much attention to proper skin protection as a youngster. As a result of this she has sun-damaged skin (i.e. sunspots, prematurely aged skin, etc) and a form of non life-threatening skin cancer which requires her to periodically get chunks of cancerous skin removed. I’m happy to report that aside from that, she is one of the most fit and healthy individuals in her age group that I know, but it’s a shame that she has to deal with it.
I’d just like to take the time to urge everyone to protect themselves from harmful UVA/UVB rays since Spring and Summer are creeping up fast.
- Grab some sunscreen and apply it 30 minutes to every visible surface of your skin before heading out! The higher the SPF value is, the longer you are protected. Even if you have some insanely high SPF like 150, you need to remember to reapply it throughout the day because it can wear off due to friction, sweat, humidity, or water exposure.
- Buy makeup items with SPF in them. You can find foundations, lip products, and even eyeshadows with SPF in them.
- Buy a facial moisturizer with SPF in it for more protection.
- Wear sunglasses! The skin around your eyes is very delicate and thusly more prone to showing sun damage. Sunglasses also protect your eyeballs against the harmful rays.
- Wear a big ol’ floppy hat. A wide brim will protect your face and neck from the sun.
- Avoid the Tanning Beds. The exposure to intensified UVA/UVB will damage your skin.
- If you have any questionable spots on your skin (especially if they don’t appear to be normal moles, birthmarks, freckles, if they’re asymmetrical, or if they increase in size) get them checked out! Don’t forget to do a full body sweep (which also includes your scalp).
Why is it important to protect yourself:
- The most obvious would be to prevent or protect against getting skin cancer.
- Sun damage or overexposure to the sun can cause the skin to age prematurely meaning more wrinkles, fine lines, and leathery skin (which aren’t fun).
- Sunburns are no fun.
- Eyes that are overexposed to the sun can become damaged and it also heightens the risk of developing cataracts.
- Overexposure to UV radiation can also surpress the body’s ability to fight off desease.