Like it or not, sunscreen is something that should be a part of your daily routine. In fact, even on cloudy days, you should be wearing an SPF (sun protection factor) of 30 or higher that protects against both UVA and UVB rays. By doing this daily, you can help reduce your risk of developing skin cancer in the future, and also keep your skin from ageing prematurely, including developing wrinkles and sunspots.
While most of us know that we should be applying sunscreen regularly, there are other ways to protect your skin from the sun, which we will be discussing throughout this article. Skin protection is important and should never be overlooked, which is why you should read on to discover some other important ways of protecting your skin from sun exposure and pesky wrinkles. While sunscreen is definitely necessary, it doesn’t hurt to shield your skin even more while still enjoying the outdoors and beautiful sunny weather.
Eat a Healthy Diet
Another way to help prevent cancers (including skin cancer) is to make it a habit to eat a healthy diet rich in fruit and vegetables daily. A Mediterranean diet is especially beneficial in preventing melanoma. Also, seafood, nuts, and seeds are great for counteracting the damaging effects of the sun and boosting your immune system. Incorporating healthy food choices into your everyday life is not only great for skin and cancer protection, but it can also give you more energy and uplift your mood overall. One thing you may want to be mindful of, however, is how much seafood and what kind of fish you eat. Fish that have higher levels of mercury may provide the opposite effect of sun damage and skin cancer prevention.
Add Vitamins to Your Routine
It’s been proven that certain supplements have the ability to boost our natural DNA repairing enzymes. This is great for anyone who’s at risk of skin cancer because while sunscreen and other methods of protection can’t reverse DNA damage, some supplements may help. Niacin (vitamin B3) can help reduce the risk of some skin cancers. Also, a natural supplement, called Polypodium Leucotomos, has shown promise for protecting the body against UV damage in clinical studies. So, if you are concerned about your risk of skin cancer or would just like to give yourself more protection, consider adding these supplements to your routine. Just remember to always consult your doctor before trying new vitamins/supplements.
Be Mindful of Medications and Products
When considering skin protection, you will also want to be mindful of medications you are taking or products you use that could make your skin more sensitive to the sun. Certain antifungals, chemotherapies, and anti-inflammatories could make your skin more prone to sunburn and sun damage. Always consult with your doctor about the side effects of certain medications you are taking. Keep in mind that this is not just the case with medications, as certain skincare products and ingredients can also have the same effects. If you are using products that change your skin sensitivity to the sun, you will need to be extra cautious to apply sunscreen regularly, wear protective clothing, and avoid direct sunlight.
Wear a Hat and Try UPF Clothing
While most of us can guess that wearing a wide-brimmed hat to the beach or during a walk in the sun is good for skin protection, do you know about the benefits of UPF clothing? Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF) clothing can help block the sun from reaching and damaging your skin, similar to sunscreen. If you are going on vacation or know you will be in the sun for extended periods, investing in UPF clothing could be a good idea for you. Regular clothing can’t block UV rays in the same way that UPF clothing does, so don’t think that you are getting sun protection with your normal clothes.
Limit Sun Exposure
One of the best ways to prevent sun damage and skin cancer is to limit your sun exposure daily. For example, when you are outside, go for shady spots with indirect sunlight. It’s best to avoid the sun altogether (if you can) when it is hottest and brightest in the morning and early afternoon. If you are going outside in the hot sun and aren’t sure whether you’ll find a shady spot, then bring an umbrella with you!
We know that a bit of sunshine and light can do wonders for your mood and mental health, so we’re not advocating to stay indoors or out of the sun altogether. While the sun can damage skin with harmful UV rays, it can also boost vitamin D levels and improve your state of mind. Just remember to be cautious whenever you are outside and try to stay in the shade, while wearing sunscreen and a hat for extra skin protection. For more information on how to prevent and erase damaging effects on the skin from sun exposure, please contact Clearview MediSpa at contact us here.