Are You Putting on Enough Sunscreen?
As I record this, it is August which here in the northern hemisphere means hours of outdoor time under the blazing summer Sun. But even though many of us do wear sunscreen to help prevent sunburn skin cancer and the kind of skin damage that the beauty industry calls premature aging recent researches found that we're not applying that sunscreen is thickly as we should hang its effectiveness by about forty percent. Sunscreen is rated for Sun Protection factor or SPF WITH SPF thirty able to block ninety, seven percent of ultraviolet rays, the higher, the SPF, the greater the protection although even SPF one hundred doesn't block one hundred percent of UV light. The problem according to this recent research out of University College. London is that few of US US enough sunscreen to enjoy those high levels of protection. Lead author entity young explained to US via email that to calculate ratings in the lab. Sunscreen is applied thickness of two milligrams of product per each square centimeter of skin. He said, an average woman has about one point, seven square meters or eighteen point three square feet of skin for a whole body sunscreen she will need about thirty three grams or one point. One fluid ounces with three whole body applications a day that's about one hundred grams or three point four fluid ounces. For reference, a fluid ounces roughly equivalent to a shot glass of sunscreen and a large tube of sunscreen holds eight fluid ounces of product. So a person spending a full day in the Sun should use about half a tube by themself. Are you using that much sunscreen probably not young and his colleagues estimate that our real life application of Sunscreen is closer to about point seven five milligrams per square centimeter at less than forty percent of the recommended thickness as a result or not getting anything close to the ninety seven percent protection promised on a bottle of SPF. Thirty. The good news from young study is that you can get away with using less product with SPF of fifty or higher. They found that even the real world application rate of point seven, five milligrams of sunscreen per square centimeter if using SPF, fifty provided considerable DNA protection compared to untreated skin. So does that mean that you should run out and buy the most expensive SPF one hundred or spread your regular SPF thirty as thick as cream cheese on a BAGEL. We also spoke with Ivy Lee a board certified dermatologist based in Pasadena California who explained that you could. But that the best daily Sun Protection Strategy is to keep it realistic. Lee, said I tell my patients to go for the highest SPF possible. That feels good on the skin for daily use. How do you know you're really applying two milligrams per square centimeter? No one knows we don't want to induce anxiety over this we want to build healthy habits. Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer in the United States and exposure to ultra-violet or UV. Light is a risk factor for all types of cancer including melanoma more than nine thousand, three, hundred Americans die for melanoma every year. UNPROTECTED EXPOSURE TO UV light damages the DNA and skin cells leaving them more susceptible to skin cancer DNA damage can result from either a few severe sunburns or a lifetime of cumulative sun exposure. Incredibly the American, Academy of Dermatology reports that getting just five or more blistering sunburns between the ages of fifteen and twenty will increase your overall melanoma risk by percents. and. Lee says that although skin cancer is less prevalent in people of color exposure to UV, light can also cause premature aging they sunscreen use will slow the appearance of wrinkles and age spots for all skin tones. Healthy sun-protection habits include avoiding sun exposure during the peak between ten am to two PM wearing a wide brimmed hat and sunglasses went outside and full sun, and of course, applying sunscreen on all exposed skin even in overcast conditions. For full coverage, Lee recommends starting the day with a cream or lotion type sunscreen preferably fifteen to thirty minutes before you step outside. Instead of measuring out of full shot glass of product, Lee tells her clients to think of applying sunscreen like a massage or can fully into the skin without missing a spot since body sizes vary and product spread. Differently there's no preset amount that works for everyone. Lease suggests reserving spray or powder type sunscreen for fast reapplication on the go the ideal is to reapply every two hours but lease as a more realistic plan is to reapply around lunchtime if you're going to be out all day. If you're heading out on water sanders snow more frequent applications are required because UV rays reflect off of those surfaces. According to Lee it's a myth that you can't burn the palms of your hands or the soles of your feet. Also, tablets and other hand held devices reflect UV light too. So pick a shady spot if you're going to spend some time in the sun scrolling.