Staying Sun Safe
7 Healthcast: Staying Sun Safe
The lifeguard's whistle is like a siren's call to jump into some summer time fun and let the sun warm our winter skin.
Dr. Joseph Merola of Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston warns that the truth is no color from the sun is safe.
He says people should invest early and often in sunscreens that offer broad-spectrum, UVA/UVB protection with an SPF of 50.
The trick is to slather it everywhere.
"The earlobes are a huge area that people forget, and we see types of pre-cancerous skin lesions called actinic keratosis develop on the ears very very frequently," he notes.
Although spray-on sunscreens are convenient, more can end up in the air than on your skin.
If you want to boost your personal sun protection factor a lot of brands of make-up now contain sunscreen, including powders that you can re-apply all day.
Dermatologists say a typical wide-brimmed hat can offer an ultraviolet protection factor of at least 5.
Most clothing also has a protection factor of about 5, but you can increase that number by washing clothes in products like Rit Sunguard.
"Washing your laundry with that material increases the SPF of your clothing to about 30," Dr. Merola points out.
Lips are another spot people forget to protect, especially the lower lip.
Dermatologists say petroleum-based sunscreen chap-sticks tend to stay on longest.
They're several sunscreen options that can help you last longer without getting burned.