Sun can do a lot of good. It regulates sleep cycles, stimulates body's production of vitamin D, & enhances feelings of well-being. But there's also a downside: Exposure to sun can lead to wrinkles, age spots, & skin cancer.
In fact, sunshine is considered single biggest cause of visible aging. But you don't have to succumb to damaging rays. Even if you haven't been sun savvy in past, it's never too late to start protecting your skin, says Darrell S. Rigel, MD, clinical professor of dermatology at New York University School of Medicine in New York City. Here are a few important skin care tips for sun protection.
For starters, every woman should eat a diet that's rich in fruits & vegetables. They contain antioxidant compounds, which reduce damaging effects of sunshine. (Refraining from smoking also makes a difference because cigarette smoke creates huge numbers of skin-damaging molecules).
But the most important thing you can do is shield your skin from sun. As long as you use sunscreen, take advantage of shade, & wear right clothing, you can enjoy your favorite outdoor activities without worrying about damaging rays.
Every time the sun strikes your skin, skin produces pigment that scatters & absorbs rays. Resulting tan means your skin is defending itself from harmful radiation.
But a tan can do only so much. Over time, ultraviolet A (UVA) & ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation in sunshine can weaken lower layer of skin, known as dermis, & promote wrinkles, brown spots, & development of skin cancer.
The most common (& least aggressive) form of skin cancer is basal cell carcinoma. It begins in top layer of skin, epidermis, & generally doesn't spread any further. While another form—squamous cell carcinoma—often remains at its original site, it is more likely to spread to other parts of body. Both basal cell and squamous cell carcinomas can be cured if detected early. However, melanoma—a cancer that starts in skin's pigment cells & readily spreads to other organs—can be deadly. It causes 75% of all deaths from skin cancer.
How can you protect yourself from sun's harmful rays? Follow us all weekend for a four-step action plan of skin care tips for sun protection will make all difference.
Here’s a sneak peak:
i. determine your risk profile
ii. choose right protection
iii. add extra protection
iv. protect yourself year-round