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UV Safety Month July 2012: Every Day Skin Protection

Gina Flores
Caregiver Advocate | Shield HealthCare
06/29/12  11:29 PM PST

According to the American Cancer Society, the major risk factor for most skin cancers is ultraviolet (UV) radiation.  Although sunlight is the main source of UV rays that can damage the genes in your skin cells, tanning beds and lamps are also sources of UV radiation. People with high levels of exposure to light from these sources are at greater risk for skin cancer.

It’s not likely to avoid sunlight completely and it would not be wise to reduce your level of activity just to avoid the outdoors, as physical activity is important for good health. But the fact is, too much sunlight can be harmful. Some people only think about sun protection when they spend a day at the lake, beach or pool. But sun exposure adds up day after day and it happens each and every time you are in the sun. Take for example your hands on the steering wheel of a car, which are often overlooked for sunscreen application.

Top 5 Skin Protection Tips:

  1. Apply sunscreen  (Tip: Check out ewg.org Sunscreen Guide for the top-rated sunscreen brands in terms of  ingredient safety)
  2. Wear a hat. The scalp is often overlooked and can burn easily
  3. Wear sunglasses to protect the eyes and sensitive skin around them
  4. Wear a cover-up, shirt or use an umbrella when in the sun for a prolonged period
  5. Use a protective lip balm with SPF

Last but not least, remember to stay hydrated. In many cases, feeling thirsty is a sign of dehydration. Drink before thirst to stay hydrated this summer.

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