Protection against UV and UVB rays

Protection against sun rays, sunburnsMore than 1 million cases of skin cancer are diagnosed each year in the United States. And with thinning of the ozone layer and the abundance of artificial tanning salons, the danger of ultraviolet (UV) and UVB rays (the "burning" rays) is increasing rapidly. The prime reason behind most cases of skin cancer is excessive exposure to sun rays. It is important to take precautions and avoid skin damage. The following tips will protect you from sunburns, skin damage and skin cancer.

Sun-protective clothing:
Now a days, there are sun-protective clothing available in the stores. If you see sunrays reaching your skin through your clothing, then either you need to wear tightly woven fabric clothes or apply sunscreen lotion on those particular skin areas. Now sun protective swimsuits are also available for skin protection during swimming.

Wear a hat:
Wear a hat with a wide brim to shade the face, head, ears, and neck.

Apply Sunscreen:
SPF stands for Sun Protection Factor. It tells you how much longer a sunscreen allows you to stay out in the sun without getting sunburn. For example, a person who would normally start to burn in 10 minutes, an SPF 30 sunscreen will extend that time to 30 x 10 minutes, or 300 minutes. Use a sunscreen at least with SPF 15 or higher. Apply to the skin which has direct exposure to the sun. Don’t forget to apply sunscreen to lips and ears – two often-forgotten areas.

Use cosmetics like lipstick, lip gloss, body lotion, foundation etc with SPF 15 or higher. This will work two ways. You can wear makeup and it protects your skin from UV rays.

Wear UV-blocking sunglasses when you are out in the sun. Check the label while buying and go for UV-blocking sunglasses. It does not have to be expensive, but they should block 99% to 100% of UVA and UVB radiation.
Another thing is UV protective sunglasses need not to be darker in color because UV protection comes from an invisible chemical applied to the lenses, not from the color or darkness of the lenses.

If possible, avoid going out in the sun since 10 am to 4 pm as the UV rays are its peak. If you have to, then protect your skin by wearing proper clothing and applying sunscreen lotion. Also wear sunglasses and a hat.

Know the day's UV index. Check the local paper. A high index calls for increased protection.

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