Wearing sunscreen is one of the easiest ways to protect your skin from the sun’s ultraviolet rays!
Ultraviolet rays from the sun are essential to produce vitamin D, however, unprotected exposure to the UV rays can cause damage to the skin, which can lead to premature skin aging, skin discolouration and skin cancer.
Ultraviolet radiation is energy from the sun that reaches the earth, there are three types of UV rays, Ultraviolet A, Ultraviolet B, and Ultraviolet C. Our body’s first defense against the Ultraviolet rays is melanin in our skin. Melanin is a substance in our body that produces skin pigmentation, the more melanin in our body the darker the pigmentation on our skin. Melanin is the first defense against the sun, it works by absorbing the dangerous UV rays before it can cause any damage to the skin. When the amount of UV damage exceeds the protection that the skin’s melanin can provide, a sun burn develops. Therefore, preventative measures such as applying sunscreen, wearing protective clothing, and limiting sun exposure is important to protect yourself against the sun’s harmful rays.
Tips to prevent sun damage
- Generously apply broad spectrum water-resistant sunscreen with an SPF (Sun Protection Factor) of at least 30 to all exposed skin. Re-apply every 2 hours and after sweating or swimming
- Wear protective clothing whenever possible, such as long sleeve shirts, pants, a hat, and sunglasses
- Sun rays are strongest between 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., seek shade when appropriate
- Get vitamin D through a healthy diet
- Use extra caution near water, snow, and sand. They reflect the damaging rays of the sun. This can increase your chances of sunburn.