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Going Outside? Don’t Forget Your Sunscreen!

Going Outside? Don’t Forget Your Sunscreen!

Why Sunscreen is Vital to Your Skin’s Health

Going outside during summertime is one of the best things about the season! But whether you’re going for a swim, hike, or just hanging out in the backyard, it can be easy to run out of the house quickly and forget to apply sunscreen.

Applying sunscreen doesn’t just prevent sunburn — it prevents premature aging and protects your skin against cancer.

Preventing Skin Cancer

According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, one in five Americans will develop skin cancer in their lifetime. Additionally, experiencing five or more sunburns doubles your risk for melanoma.

Sunscreen is an important step in preventing skin cancer, as studies show that regular daily use of an SPF 15 or higher reduces the risk of developing melanoma by 50 percent.

Choosing a Sunscreen

Sunscreen blocks UV rays from your skin, preventing damage. But with so many sunscreen options on the market, how do you choose the right one? And once you have it, how do you apply it properly? Here are some tips:

  • Choose a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 and broad-spectrum coverage, which means it protects against both UVA and UVB rays.
  • Apply sunscreen generously – most people only use 25-50% of the recommended amount. A good rule of thumb is to use enough sunscreen so that you can’t see your skin through it.
  • Reapply sunscreen every two hours, or more often if you’re swimming or sweating.

For those who are planning on spending time in the water, there are special waterproof sunscreens available. But keep in mind that no sunscreen is truly “waterproof,” so you’ll still need to reapply it regularly.

Keeping Your Skin Healthy

No matter what your plans are this summer, make sure to put sunscreen at the top of your list! Your skin will thank you for it. However, applying sunscreen cannot completely prevent your risk of skin cancer. It’s important to seek shade and wear protective clothing if you plan to spend long hours in the sun. Seeing your doctor regularly and performing regular self-examinations are vital for cancer prevention.

Ridgecrest Regional Hospital is proud to offer the RRH Cancer Center, providing board-certified medical oncologists based in Ridgecrest. For more information, visit our website.