Protect Your Skin This Summer

With summer rearing to go, the season of beach trips, barbecues, and jaunts to the swimming pool is just around the corner. Yet, with all these opportunities to bare your skin, come various ways to damage your skin.

Skin damage from the sun comes in a range of forms: sunburns, leathery skin, dark spots, wrinkles, and more. You also increase your chances of developing skin cancer, which is the most common cancer worldwide. It is estimated that one in five Americans will develop skin cancer by the age of 70.

In an effort to help prevent skin damage, we have rounded up some tips to help you have a healthy summer. We begin with the most effective preventative measure – sunscreen.

Don’t Forget the Sunscreen

The most effective way to prevent ultraviolet rays from damaging your skin is to apply sunscreen. Do this whether it is sunny or cloudy outside. When you go to purchase sunscreen, be sure that the label says “broad spectrum,” which means that it protects against both UVA and UVB rays. Be sure to also stick to an SPF of 30 or higher.

Do Not Sunbathe for Long Periods Of Time

Even if you are wearing sunscreen, purposefully exposing your skin to the sun for an extended period is ill-advised. Granted, sunbathing can have its benefits, such as increasing your Vitamin D intake, but you put your body at an enhanced risk of sun poisoning. It is recommended that you sunbathe for about 20 minutes each day. To further reduce the risk of sunburn, it’s best to stick to sunbathing for around five to 10 minutes.

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Avoid the Tanning Bed

If you want to damage your skin, there’s no better way to do it than by regularly hitting the tanning salon. Per the American Academy of Dermatology, just one tanning bed session can increase your chance of developing skin cancer by 20 percent, squamous cell carcinoma by 67 percent, and basal cell carcinoma by 29 percent. In fact, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration requires warning labels on all indoor tanning equipment. Just remember, there is no such thing as a safe tanning bed.

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