Winter Sun Safety and Skin Cancer Prevention
When the temperature goes down, or it had been a few days when you had last seen the sun, do not think that you can give few days off to your sunscreen. Even in the chilly winters and cloudy days, the harmful Ultraviolet rays are everywhere around you. What’s more? They can penetrate through the dark clouds and hit your skin and can raise chances of Skin cancer. So, even in the winters, you cannot go loose on protecting your skin from the sun.
What does statistics have to say?
Studies have been conducted and various research have been carried out to understand what happens with the skin in winters and who are at more risk of skin damage:
Out of all the skin cancers, approximately 90% are caused by overexposure to the harmful UV radiation.
Winter sports’ enthusiasts are at a greater risk of sun-induced skin damage and potential skin cancer. Even on cloudy days, winter sports addicts are at higher risk of skin damage – that is because up to 80% of the sun’s harmful Ultraviolet rays can easily penetrate the clouds.
Snowboarders and skiers mostly forget to put sunscreen and are more likely to catch windburn and frostbite than sunburn.
How to protect skin during winters?
There are few tips to prevent skin from the bad effects of the winter.
Guard your skin on cloudy days
Even if there is no sun out, you should not miss on applying a good sunscreen on your skin. As per a renowned Oncologist Chon, a good sunscreen can dramatically reduce the risk of skin cancer.
While going out, wrap your face with scarf or stole and carry an umbrella with you.
Maintain good sunscreen habits
Applying sunscreen while going out should be your habit. You can follow the below year-round sunscreen tips:
Use a sunscreen that is at least SPF 30 which is effective in broad spectrum blocking both Ultraviolet A and Ultraviolet B rays and is waterproof as well.
If you have dry skin, put sunscreen half an hour before going outdoors.
Apply it all over the face, hands, ears and arms.
While applying on sensitive areas, use the sunscreen with zinc oxide.
Both snow and chilly winds can throw away any sunscreen protection used and hence reduce its effectiveness, therefore, it is strongly recommended to re-apply it at least after every two hours.
Reapply the sunscreen lotion after sweating or swimming.
Enjoy the sun safely
To completely protect your skin in the winter, take little extra care:
Use a lip balm with SPF 30.
Wear long-sleeved jacket, gloves and hat.
Wear wrap-around goggles or sunglasses with 100% UV protection.
Try to be in the shade between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. when the sun is right above the head and the rays are the strongest in this duration.
If you feel anything unusual or you fear any symptoms of skin cancer, see an Oncologist without delay.
How to find the best sunscreen that suits your skin?
Confused which sunscreen is the best for you? Below are some quick tips to get you through:
Identify your skin type – normal, dry, oily
Be informed of any allergy that you may have
Choose a sunscreen with SPF more than 15
Go for a water-resistant sunscreen
You can always seek help from a dermatologist
So be careful with your skin during winters. Don’t let winters to trick with your skin; a little awareness and a lot of alertness can prevent your skin from the bad, very bad Skin cancer!